Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Subsistence foraging

From some of what I've read, this is the time of year, and the kind of weather, that might have, in the old days, caused Native Americans to eat roots and bark to stay alive. We're fortunate to have more than adequate supplies of food and fresh vegetables in our home. But, in anticipation of (preparation for?) any forthcoming Armageddon, some of the folks who live here thought it might be interesting to learn how to prepare pine bark. Here are photos of the preparation process. Collection photos you'll need to find on your own. There were only two pair of snow shoes, and the collectors didn't take photos.


white pine bark strips         © harrington

separating outer bark and cambium    © harrington

full bowl of cambium            © harrington

"green" fingers stained by outer bark  © harrington

cambium soaking in water   © harrington

draining cambium strips     © harrington

cambium strips on cookie sheet     © harrington

dry in oven (200 degrees, 30 minutes)  © harrington       

dried cambium ready for grinding        © harrington

Kimberly Blaeser helps move us into Spring with her Haiku Journey.

Haiku Journey

By Kimberly Blaeser 

i. Spring

the tips of each pine
the spikes of telephone poles
hold gathering crows

may’s errant mustard
spreads wild across paved road
look both ways

roadside treble cleft
feeding gopher, paws to mouth
cheeks puffed with music

yesterday’s spring wind
ruffling the grey tips of fur
rabbit dandelion

         ii. Summer

turkey vulture feeds
mechanical as a red oil rig
head rocks down up down

stiff-legged dog rises
goes grumbling after squirrel
old ears still flap

snowy egret—curves,
lines, sculpted against pond blue;
white clouds against sky

banded headed bird
this ballerina killdeer
dance on point my heart

         iii. Fall

leaf wind cold through coat
wails over hills, through barren trees
empty garbage cans dance

damp September night
lone farmer, lighted tractor
drive memory’s worn path

sky black with migration
flocks settle on barren trees
leaf birds, travel songs

october moon cast
over corn, lighted fields
crinkled sheaves of white

         iv. Winter

ground painted in frost
thirsty morning sun drinks white
leaves rust golds return

winter bare branches
hold tattered cups of summer
empty nests trail twigs

lace edges of ice
manna against darkened sky
words turn with weather

now one to seven
deer or haiku syllables
weave through winter trees

Northern follows jig
body flashes with strike, dive:
broken line floats up.

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