Boston ivy covers the front of the house.
In autumn, now, its berries feed every
small creature that lives in or near our yard
and the ochres and reds of its leaves feed
the human eyes and soul of our neighbourhood.
About now, as leaves are teaching snowflake
children about gravity and flurry dancing,
I have to deal with more practical items
like trimming giving our house a trim
before the uppper windows and eaves
start complaining and asking for a bowl
and some shears, or begging for alms
on the heavily travelled street.
As I age, my once fearless disposition
has caused my wife to request with slight
insistance and no uncertainty that either
I get a better ladder than old swingy
or hire somebody a professional shamer,
I’d estimate to do my job for me.
So, went shopping for a better ladder.
We kicked the tires of a few aluminum
extensions and fibreglass types, around town;
But she suggested, correctly, that Simon,
our son-in-law, knew a great deal about
such things; so I phoned him, and he did
know and tell me about a ladder he uses
a ladder that has adjustable feet for
uneven ground — makes sense to me
even though our yard was leveled by
a crack team of landscapers in 1938.
Of course, we could use it at the cottage,
where the land should have contour lines
(sort of like isobars in the weather forcast,
but dealing with elevation, not pressure,
since there is no pressure at a summer cottage).
There is nothing left to do but dream that,
like Robert Frost’s apple picker,
there will come a day when I have
trimmed my hirsuit house,
descended my even footed ladder,
put it away, and settled in for a
long winter’s nap.