Wednesday, March 14, 2012


Someone asked me the other day if the setting for this part of my writing adventure, a convent, had any relation to my current project.

I didn't think it did, other than the sense of isolation I imagine prairie pioneers -- and anyone measuring 8'3" -- must have experienced.

I thought the rural surrounding was a stronger tie, the agricultural life that is so evident here (every day I pass cows, goats, horses and chickens, which seem to be more or less in people's lawns) and particularly at the convent, where the large garden is currently producing spinach and chard (in March... a miracle to a Canadian!), and where they've just finished planting chick peas and will soon start on potatoes, everything sown according to the moon calendar. (Andalucia, it's the Saskatchewan of Spain.)

But then J. reminded me that the Willow Bunch museum, which has a room dedicated to my giant (complete with giant bed, giant sock, giant ring), is in a convent. And then I remembered that Edouard's sister was a nun. So, there are ties.

And, working outside helps me imagine a life that was lived much more out of doors. Birds and plants are finding their ways in to so many of the poems. I've been here only a week but already I'm noticing buds on trees that weren't there when I arrived. And every day the garden is raucous with spring.

I just have to make sure the olive trees and the amazing hoopoe I saw the other day don't make their way into Willow Bunch.

1 comment: