Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Poland truffle

initial pusen variety, the bones of wilhelmina joaquim who outlived 5 husbands, marching down cobbled streets to root out impulses, drives and clatters, northern pushing muscles developed over centuries without any specific purpose, like candlewhite morticians helping history take closure, bargain for themselves, knot hands together with blackened ropes, swing those smoking incense lanterns with chanting voice, change of heart, gobbling up children like fairy tale dragons whose priest and prince have not arrived for the slaying, telling hordes of camera-wielding tourists to back off as they exit the cave, where borders blur and pigs run wild in forest feasts, helping multi-millionaire foodies bind a cure, grip a grater, shave the white, then the black over top of steaming fillet, drowning in rouge her face in the mirror, over one shoulder seen but not heard.

"It's the equivalent of grating a gold ingot over your plate of tagliatelle," was the verdict of one Italian commentator. He was explaining how the worst season for white truffles in Italy since 2003 – which was fiercely hot and dry from spring to autumn – has resulted in incredible prices for tuber magnatum pico, the so-called "white gold" of the forest.
In Milan, it is changing hands for more than ¿10 (£7) per gram. With prices like that, the export market is in deep trouble. "Production is going down vertically," said Andrea Rossano the head of Tartufingros, a company based near Cuneo in the far north-west of Italy which sends truffles all over the world. "The situation is dramatic and the prices are sky-rocketing." (By Peter Popham in RomeThursday, 1 November 2007 )

Monday, June 09, 2008

30 years mountain meet sky

"Millions of Americans have long had a fascination with our solar system. One of the early Americans who became infatuated with the heavens was Professor Thaddeus S.C. Lowe. Lowe, who is best remembered for his Civil War exploits, creating the Nation's first military air force. He sold his "Balloon Corps" idea to President Abraham Lincoln, and made a number of successful balloon flights over northern Virginia, observing Confederate lines for the Union Army.
Lowe's own memoirs tell how he "would lie in a field or sit astride a picket fence, gazing for hours at the great white clouds hanging like banners or floating slowly across the skies." These observations would one day help him in his ballooning and aerial navigation. Lowe stated "from living in high altitudes, I had observed that there are often very different air currents in the valleys from those which exist in the upper atmosphere." What Lowe was observing were the jet streams that moved the clouds across the skies." (Paul Rippens)

lie in the field shaking, this train, this conversation with god, making the most of the moment, wondering about that edge of fear, those rivulets of sweat down my neck and back, 4 years old in south dakota field, behind the house, laying low and elevated somehow at once, my crewcut shining with heat, breaking a blade of grass to chew, no toys, only my own 2 hands, songs forming on my lips, songs of praise, of play, of discovery, of disclosure, who knows who in this quiet place, my grandmother and grandfathers breath all around, an itchy leg, squinting because the sun is so bright, the red earth staining my corduroy pants, a poem, a weaving of ideas into a blanket of comfort, the smell of rain coming across the prairie from the east.