May ~ Hail Bounteous May!

May FlowersFor those of you poetically handicapped, like me, “hail bounteous May” is from John Milton’s poem Song on May Morning, which you can read here.  And, yipes, it also reminds me that I really need to read more poetry, which in turn reminds me that I need to hop back on my Deal Me In Challenge which has been sadly neglected recently because of other interesting pursuits.  Ah, such is life!

box of lilacs

And speaking of life with its ups and downs and ins and outs, do you ever reach that place of happy contentment?  Well, I’m there now.  The sun is shining, the dogs are barking, the bees are humming and even if all is not right with the world, taking joy in the simple things in life is an excellent prescription.

April was just fun!  I can’t remember any specific thing I did to make it that way but all in all, it was a rather harmonious month.  I have little new information about my kitchen reno.  The cabinets were completed, countertops went on and some plumbing work done here and there.  More electrical needs to be done, tiling the backsplash and other little odds and ends.  But it’s back functioning and I’m so excited!  Now to start on the bathroom! 🙄  Otherwise, I’ve been planting some flowers, cooking some meals and enjoying life in general.  I still need to get to tidying up my garden … hopefully soon!

Reading with Tea

Reading this year has been more frequent than last (although not nearly as frequent as I’d like) and enjoyable.  I’m continuing my Agatha Christie challenge and finished both The Man in the Brown Suit and The Secret of Chimneys, both excellent in their own way.  I finished Purgatorio and am moving on to Paradiso in The Divine Comedy, and am slowly making my way through my Classics Club Spin book, A Journey to the Western Islands of Scotland and A Journal of a Tour to the Hebrides.

Lily of the Valley in a Watering can

As for the rest of May, I’d love to walk on the beach, read some poetry, do some riding, and attempt some sketching.  I have a wedding to go to and I’d also like to start working towards getting the food blog, Journey to the Garden, up and running again.  My reading will continue with Agatha, I’d like to complete The Vindication of the Rights of Woman which I completely fell off the wagon for Ruth’s read-along, and finish my Spin book.  But the big news is that I’m going to be hosting a read-along for C.S. Lewis’ The Four Loves for the month of June so I’ll be preparing for that.

I hope everyone is having a wonderful May and may you all take joy in the simple things! Hail bounteous May!



Photo #1 courtesy of Jill Wellington; Photo #2 courtesy of Mozlase; Photo #3 courtesy of Jose AlbafotosPhoto # 4 courtesy of Suju

20 thoughts on “May ~ Hail Bounteous May!

  1. I am mostly keeping up with the Deal Me In challenge, but yesterday I drew my first card for May and haven’t sat down to read it yet. The card is for The Lotus Eaters (Tennyson). I have some other reading planned first, but I think I will read it tonight.

    For May poems, I really love “Corinna’s Going a-Maying” (Robert Herrick).

    I look forward to your thoughts on Wollstonecraft. I finished the book but I still need to look over my notes and write a review.

    • Good for you for keeping up with the Deal Me In! I never do but that’s because I write reviews for each. If I just read, I think I MIGHT be able to keep up.

      Ah, poetry! I’m always encouraged when I hear of someone reading poetry!

      Oh, if only I had more time to read, I’d be done “Vindication”! I just need to keep focussed and I’ll complete it one of these days!

  2. So, if we admit to being poetically handicapped, do we get the special little thingy to hang on our rearview mirror that allows us to park in the special spots at grocery stores? Because if so, I’m TOTALLY handicapped that way 😉

    All kidding aside, I really tried to get into poetry in my 20’s and nothing worked. Since then I’ve just been grateful that I was born in the age of the Novel 🙂

    • I’m not sure of the rules. I’ve heard you may get a special sign to hang around your neck that says, “Dunce!” but it’s not confirmed … 😉

      If at first you don’t succeed, try, try, again. How is that for a platitude? But honestly, I feel somewhat the same as you, however I know that poetry can be so complex and artistic and also be a means of communication that is perhaps closer to heaven, that I’ve always felt that it was my lack of effort that handicapped me and that I’m missing out on a whole new world. I hope to find that world one day …

      • At first glance I read that as “dance” and had the funny picture of me dancing in a parking lot of walmart or something 🙂

        I figure that poetry is just a form of communication that doesn’t work for me. I’ll leave it to people who speak about nurturing the soul and all that. I won’t mock them, but I won’t be joining in either.

  3. Riding… horse-back riding? 🙂

    It’s wonderful when life feels just right. We had a mini “heat wave” last week, which was kinda fun. This week it’s back to rain, which is more my thing anyway.

    • Funny you should mention horse-back riding. I’ve had an urge lately to buy a horse. However, wiser heads have prevailed and I remain horse-less, lol!

      I know! I live perhaps not 3-4-ish hours from you, I think. Did you know that? The last few days it’s rained during the night and has been beautifully sunny during the day. You, too? I’m enjoying the heat and cold mix.

      • i live pretty close to Marian… the heat wave was scary and it was a relief when the rain came… the hummingbirds are ignoring the downpour; don’t how they do that without getting wet….

        • Ah, we should all get together for a books and tea chat one day! 🙂

          Don’t the hummingbirds’ wings move so fast that they miss the raindrops? 😉 My carport almost flooded and I had to put the pump in the drain overnight. Ah, the perils of living in a rainforest!

  4. Yay! Happy May, Cleo. It sounds lovely where you are. Last night, here in SoCal, we had such a violent cold wind (and still blowing this morning) that I feared I would wake to see our full young trees in shreds. (One already lost a new branch last week due to the wind). It happens in spring every so many years, and even lasts through June. (Such a bummer.)

    ANYWAY, yes, more poetry would be so nice. I’m looking forward to the WEM poetry section – about ten years from now, right? I am still thinking about joining your read along through CS Lewis’ The Four Loves. I have to take a look at it…you said it wasn’t all that long. I will do that next week. (This weekend…beginning tonight and through Sunday…my girls have several rehearsals and shows, and my son has a rehearsal and piano recital…SOOOOO…you know where I’ll be.) Then I will give a definitive answer. I’ll need to purchase the book itself, too.

    • Oh yay! A letter-comment! I LOVE letter-comments (Jillian is a master of them!) ! It sounds like you’re experiencing the French mistral! I do love the wind but not when it destroys my plants. I had my quince tree damaged by falling branches one winter and it was very disappointing. But it’s seemed to have recovered and flowered beautifully this year. In fact, the quince, apple, and elderberry seem to have tons of fruit this year, while my fig and blueberries are just average.

      Oh my, the WEM! I have fallen off that wagon with a HUGE bum. You have been so dedicated to stay on it. Trying to read three volumes of Solzenitsyn (unabridged) at about 1500 pages each did it to me. And then The Republic which I loved but wanted to post per book which, of course, takes way longer. And then there was the issue of my severely reduced reading time because of other life pursuits (work being one of them). I plan to jump back in when you start the plays. The poetry section is daunting but I, too, am looking forward to it and any discussions we have. I, at least, will need lots of help. :-Z

      I would absolutely LOVE it if you could join The Four Loves read-along!! It’s not that long and Lewis is always insightful. Someone told me it was their favourite book of Lewis’ so I’m excited to read it (finally!) Have fun watching your kiddos at their recitals! And enjoy every moment! 🙂

  5. I just came upon this post (and hmmm, I thought I was following you?) and it is adding to a nice vibe for this Monday. I love the photos accompanying the post, too.

    I know what you mean about poetry and I am trying to fit more of it into my life.

    Cheers for a good week!

    • I’ve sent you a “follow” invite, Laurie. I had a hard time signing up for your blog too but I just kept trying and one day it worked. Hopefully the invite will make it easy.

      On one hand, you think it would be easy to read poetry because it’s usually so short, but really you have to read a poem at least three times and then break it down and then think in a different way and it’s really ALOT of work. But I do need to make time to do it. I wouldn’t regret it.

      I hope you have a wonderful week, as well! 🙂

  6. Well, I ordered my copy of The Four Loves from the library, so I hope to join in! I’m gone at the beginning of June & then my brother is visiting at the end, but I will at least have the book…

    • Excellent! It’s so short, Reese. I think when you receive it you’ll see that it shouldn’t be a problem to fit in. I’ll be looking forward to your insights! 🙂

  7. It seems like my spirits usually perk up around May, too–I think it’s just late enough in the year that spring is now definite rather than still questionable (or at least it’s that was in NE Ohio–and then we fall into summer, sigh).

    It seems like you’re flying through books, lately! Or else I’m sluggish by comparison, lol. I look forward to your thoughts on Dante. (Eep, I’m so far behind you have a post up already.)

    • It appears that I’m getting through books only because I’m ready lots of Christies. Otherwise I’m sort of plodding too. I really want to finish Dante up this week to have June clear of him. I have NO idea how I’m going to write reviews on Purgatorio and Paradiso. Sigh!

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