nichepoetryandprose

poetry and prose about place

Posts Tagged ‘edible plants

spring flowers – service berry bushes

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At this time of year, many ditches and fields in New Brunswick are filled with Serviceberry bushes in bloom. Their delicate white flowers only last a short while but later, in summer, we will be able to pick sweet Serviceberries.

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the shad are running

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after hard rain

and thin wind

between cold front and warm

riverbanks overflow

and for dinner we have fiddleheads

potatoes and shad, served

with last summer’s Serviceberry jam

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Serviceberry bushes are torn fish nets

holes poked through with fingers

white petals scattered over mossy stones

on the river shore

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Published as ‘the shad are running’ in within easy reach, 2016, Chapel Street Editions

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Copyright Jane Tims 2017

A contest ! What is ‘beelwort’?

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In writing my science-fiction book Meniscus: Crossing The Churn, I had a lot of fun inventing plant and animal species to populate the planet Meniscus. I also enjoyed thinking of the various common items a traveller on the planet might encounter. I include a Glossary at the end of the book, to help the reader. However, one item is not identified, on purpose. I thought it might be fun to keep readers guessing about the identity of this item …  “beelwort” …

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What is ‘beelwort’ ???

 

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When we first meet Odymn, the book’s protagonist, she is a slave in the city of Prell. She puts in her days at a bar, waiting tables. Being a waitress in Prell is no fun. As the book says, every day has its challenges: boiling coffee thrown, the brutal behavior of the Gel-head customers, and, worst of all —

 

Slices of beelwort slipped into a pocket …

 

The “wort” in “beelwort” suggests a plant or plant product. The only other thing I know about “beelwort” is now part of my draft of Book Four — Meniscus: The Town at Themble Hill.  Odymn talks about her cooking:

 

‘When we return to Garth,” she says,

“I refuse to take another turn at cooking.

No one likes what I make.”

 

“I like what you make,” says the Slain.

 

“You’d eat beelwort on a stick,”

says Odymn.

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So what is “beelwort”?

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For example, a slice of “beelwort” in a pocket might be like having a slice of orange put into your pocket …

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I am running a contest. The winner of the contest will recieve a copy of my poetry book within easy reach, a book about edible wild plants … not a beelwort among them!

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To enter the contest, let me know what you think “beelwort” is — the answer can go in my Blog or Facebook comments. Describe it in one sentence (nothing obscene is allowed and I reserve the right to edit or not allow the comment).  I will run the answers by the members of my writing group and have them select one winner. I’ll announce the winner by March 31, 2017 and arrange to send him or her a copy of within easy reach, postage paid.

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Put on your thinking caps! What is “beelwort”?

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Copyright Jane Tims 2017

 

 

 

 

results of the Christmas sale

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On this past Saturday, I had the fun of being a vendor at Sandra’s Market Fredericton. This was the first experience of its kind for me, although I have attended such sales for years.

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Overall, I had a great time! The venue at the Delta was beautiful, not crowded, and set-up was easy. The other vendors were pleasant and very interesting to talk to. A couple of good friends stopped by and there were lots of shoppers. I took a book to read, but watching the people at the sale was too much fun to miss. I sold five books and three paintings, including the painting ‘teaberries’, seen below.

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I think the best part of the sale was talking to the various shoppers about their experiences picking berries and gathering wild plants. A couple of people mentioned battling the squirrels for hazelnuts. Many of the older shoppers said their berry picking days were over due to ailments. A few people were interested in identifying edible mushrooms.

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wintergreen

December 8, 2016 ‘teaberries’ Jane Tims (acrylic) 8″ x 8″ $30 (SOLD)

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Wintergreen

Gaultheria procumbens

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first gathering in spring

thick leaves as leather crush

weep wintergreen

oil infuses pale tea

milk to swell aroma

sugar and midnight sparks

sweet steam meets breath

aspirin makes undelicate

my heart

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The leaves of Eastern teaberry or American wintergreen contain oil of wintergreen; the chemical in this oil is methyl salicylate, known for its anti-inflammatory properties and closely related to aspirin. Methyl salicylate will build up an electrical charge when dried with sugar and rubbed. In Quebec, the plant is known as la petit thé du bois (little tea of the woods). Flowers are waxy, nodding, bell-shaped and white.

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Copyright Jane Tims 2016

Written by jane tims

December 14, 2016 at 7:47 am

raspberries in winter

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On December 11, 2016 (from 10 AM to 4 PM), I will be at the Delta Hotel (Fredericton, New Brunswick) at Sandra’s Christmas Market Fredericton to sell my paintings and books. If you are in the Fredericton area, please pay me a visit!

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I have a new painting for sale at the event. December 8, 2016  ‘raspberries’ is painted in acrylics, 7″ x 5″, gallery edges, unframed. It reminds me of picking raspberries on a summer day.

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raspberries

December 8, 2016 ‘raspberries’ Jane Tims (acrylic) 7″ x 5″ $25

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mended by raspberries

for Mary

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drove all the way to Flume Ridge

to pick those berries, large as thimbles

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red as blood after we’d pricked

our fingers on needled vines

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crossed the covered bridge to nowhere

the through road blocked, the way broken

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the covered bridge at our backs

the roar of the flume in our ears

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the tipple of honey bees

lightheaded in the berry canes

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This poem appears in my book, within easy reach, Chapel Street Editions, 2016.

Copyright Jane Tims 2016

Written by jane tims

December 9, 2016 at 9:25 am

getting ready for December – a gallery of ‘within easy reach’ paintings

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On December 11, 2016 (from 10 AM to 4 PM), I will be at the Delta Hotel (Fredericton, New Brunswick) at Sandra’s Christmas Market Fredericton to sell my paintings and books. This is the first time I have ever tried selling at a craft show and I will be sure to report back on the experience.

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I began preparing for this event in July, painting a number of small canvasses, all on themes associated with the poems in my book within easy reach (Chapel Street Editions, Woodstock, 2016). Here are a few of the paintings I will have for sale. They are all priced to sell and I will give a discount for anyone buying both a book and a painting.

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August 20, 2016 ‘pick faster’ Jane Tims (10″ x 10″) acrylic, gallery edges ($45)

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Jane Tims August 25 2016 'rose hips'

August 25, 2016 ‘rose hips’ Jane Tims (10″ x 12″) acrylic, gallery edges ($40)

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October 21, 2016 ‘blueberries’ Jane Tims (5″ x 7″) acrylic, gallery edges ($30)

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Scan0020

July 31, 2016 ‘wild strawberries’ Jane Tims (10″ x 8″) acrylic, gallery edges ($40)

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August 14, 2016. ‘wild hops’ Jane Tims (12″ x 10″) acrylic, gallery edges ($50)

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August 16, 2016 ‘high bush cranberries’ Jane Tims (12″ x 10″) acrylic, gallery edges ($55)

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My books and paintings would be imaginative Christmas gifts for anyone who loves poetry, wants to re-kindle their own memories of berry picking or gathering other wild plants, or wants a small painting for a corner of a favourite room. I am thinking someone who has a home bar might like ‘wild hops’.

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I hope the market goers love them! If you are in the Fredericton area on December 11, I hope to see you there!

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Copyright 2016  Jane Tims

Written by jane tims

November 30, 2016 at 7:43 am

pick faster

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October 21, 2016 ‘blueberries’, Jane Tims

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pick faster

for Dad

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blue ripens as morning, deft fingers

noisy pails, hail on metal gutters

this bush spent, unsatisfactory

berries over there fatter

bluer

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I am certain I see, beside mine

my father’s hands, callused

and quick

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berries roll between

thumb and fingers

I try to meet

his expectation

pick faster

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Published in: ‘within easy reach’, Chapel Street Editions, 2016

Copyright Jane Tims 2016

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October 21, 2016 ‘sweet hurts’ Jane Tims

Written by jane tims

November 9, 2016 at 8:35 am

yard work – the grape harvest

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We had a frost on October 4 and today, I harvested my grapes. You will imagine tubs of ripe fruit, hands stained purple and a row of grape jelly jars on the counter.

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my grapes, wandering about in the birch tree

my grapes, wandering about in the birch tree

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But my grape harvest is a bit small. However after ten years, this is the first ‘harvest’ from this vine so I am quite proud! No jelly though. I ate the lot of them, sitting in the yard, admiring the autumn leaves. They were juicy, sweet and delicious.

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the entire harvest!

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Copyright 2016 Jane Tims

Written by jane tims

October 12, 2016 at 7:11 am

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