Town Column : West Tisbury
These delicious cool nights and mornings have been perfect for sleeping. The cat hasn't yowled to be let out at 5 am. The dogs haven't raked their golden paws across our faces, the universal retriever request for breakfast or playtime, or barked at squirrels flinging themselves wildly from tree to tree. Everyone has been content to snuggle into their covers and roll over for another half hour or so. Bliss.
If you look carefully, the late-summer greens appear softly overlaid with shades of gold, russet, and red. The sun seems lower in the sky. Debbie and Eric Magnuson's stand offers a bounteous crop of pears and apples from their orchard, Tiasquin Farm. Tomatoes, corn, beans, eggplant, sunflowers, and bright zinnias are still abundant, treasured anew as the inevitable frost will soon arrive, ending the tastes and warmth of summer's produce.
I have begun cutting back my garden. It started looking raggedy, especially this last week, while I am bursting with the energy that cooler air always brings. My black-eyed susans made a five-foot high gauntlet that towered through our kitchen garden all of July and August, but are finally looking tired and ready to be put to rest. Daylily foliage is scraggly. Once they are gone, the asters and phlox can assume center stage, especially in one corner where a combination of white phlox stands surrounded by delicate white flowers of an airy aster Ruth Kirchmeier gave me years ago. It always strikes me as such a fresh spot at a time when little else is.
Lia Kahler Littlefield called last week to talk about her father, Al, and the memorial celebration being held in his honor next Saturday, Sept. 19, 11 am, at the Polly Hill Arboretum. It is being planned by the three Littlefield siblings: Lia, Ann Nelson, and Sydna Moon. They and their families will all be here.
The arboretum was formerly part of Littlefield Farm that ran back from both sides of State Road at one time. Al and Peg Littlefield were well known in town. It will be nice to have an occasion to remember both of them. As Lia put it, "My dad loved to eat and he loved to be with people." So a potluck seems just right. The family asks that everyone attending bring a salad or side dish to share along with your stories and good will. Parking is off Littlefield Lane in the field (across from the arboretum.)
Watching the Town Hall reconstruction project has provided great interest and curiosity among town residents all through the spring and summer. So when Bea Phear, chairman of the Building Committee, called to ask Leslie Baker and me to re-hang the town's collection of artwork in the new building, we were pretty excited. I am thrilled to report that it looks great. You are all invited to see for yourselves, as the Building Committee invites everyone in for an Open House on Tuesday, September 15, from 4:30 to 6 pm.
Alex and Amy Finkelstein and big sister, Emma, are happy to announce the birth of Andrew John Finkelstein on August 26. He will become a familiar sight as he comes with his family to visit his grandparents, David and Molly Finkelstein of West Tisbury.
The Friends of the Library have already begun work on next year's book sale. Indeed, work begins the day after the current year's sale ends. So the Friends want to remind everyone that, as you sort through your books, receive duplicates or unwanted books, please remember our library's annual fundraiser. Books are accepted year-round any time the library is open. We can always use paper bags as well.
Materials for Saturday craft projects at the library are once again set out all day between 10:30 am and 4 pm. This week's offering is "Brownbag Puppets."
Photographs by Betsy Burmeister are this month's art exhibit at the library. They are beautifully composed and presented. Come and see them.
I have finally left town on two occasions, both art-related. The first was to see Kib Bramhall's new paintings at Carol Craven's Gallery in Vineyard Haven. They made very obvious the difference between a perfect summer day - blue skies and warm sunshine across dunes and seaside landscapes - and icy, silent wintry views of stone-walled yards and woods. I thought it was his most beautiful show ever.
My other trip was to Oak Bluffs. The Dragonfly Gallery opened a three-person show called "Con Brio." One of the artists is Jance Lentz, a friend from Ohio who paints on Martha's Vineyard every summer. Her paintings include Island views, paintings of her garden (modeled on Monet's, with arches and lots of color) and the medieval walled cities she visited in France. Kyle Stevenson and Dragonfly owner Don McKillop are the other exhibitors.
Put on a sweater and enjoy being outside.