Thursday, June 19

no monkeys or weasels

there are clumps of mushrooms that grow along the sidewalk just outside my front door, around the stumps of long-gone trees. they surprise me, on mornings after rain, all the funny different fungi, and then they all wilt and shrink away again, crumpling and blackening in the summer heat.

mushrooms are beautiful. nature in general is pretty nice to look at, but mushrooms and everything about them evoke an extra-awesome loveliness. I didn't used to like eating the things, but that was before I'd tasted any kind other than those in a can. the first time I held a real, whole, button mushroom, still speckled with a bit of dirt, I fell in love with that supple, barely-soft texture. I know there are a million kinds of mushrooms, but those little buttons are the kind I keep around for salads and omelettes and soups and miscellaneous pasta dishes. mushrooms you sauté yourself taste so much less slimy than the ones that come in cans.

I've been volunteering lately at the local co-op. it's not a very busy store, but there are plenty of interesting folk involved with the project. one of them runs a blog about local flora and scavenging wild food. he brought a dish of juneberries in last week, which were juicy and delicious. he told me about the Hoosier Mushroom Society too, all about hunting and documenting wild mushrooms (and other stuff) around the state, which I find weirdly and absolutely awesome.

we talked about mulberries one time, behind the quiet counter of CityFoods, and once I knew what they looked like, I couldn't help but start noticing them everywhere. there are corners in this town with mulberries squashed slipperyly and purple-crimson all over the pavement.

I found myself in a park this week--McAllister Park, it seems to be called--and I saw mulberry bushes all along the path. I picked a small skirtful and took them home for snacking on.
my fingers (and a good chunk of my skirt's hem) turned purple.
I hear there are juneberry bushes near the library, and I think the next tim I go over there, I'll pick some. if I think ahead a bit, I won't have to carry them in my skirt.

it's less tempting to pick the strange mushrooms that grow outside in the grass. I don't know how many random kinds there are. the ones I sort-of recognize look like deer mushrooms, oyster mushrooms, and possibly these ones with no neat common name. they most probably aren't all edible, and they are prettier to look at than to collect.

speaking of mushrooms and beauty, this string of televisual theme music is most probably the prettiest, loveliest, gorgeousest thirty-second video I have ever come across. I'm not sure what kind they look like, but there are mushrooms around the 23 second mark.

Orphan Black Opening }

as a postscript--did you realize? these two songs--Around the Mulberry Bush and Pop Goes the Weasel--are (somehow? for the most part?) two different songs. for some reason my brain wants them to be the same.

2 comments:

Nic S said...

Are mulberries the same as blackberries? They look the same...

amelia chesley said...

they do. but mulberries are a bit smaller, and less tart, mostly.