Sunday, 16 June 2013

in the field with red ants, blackfly and scarlet emperors

Field Study's Man in E17 got down on his knees to weed the bed in which our pouting ruddies reside. The out and out scarlet emperors impressed upon his retinas the vivacity of their imperious powers. All was a fervent blur in their red orange red field of leguminous seduction. Under the influence of the runner bean's floral hue, the field student gallantly ripped up the fat hen, tugged and tore at the dandelions, snapped the prickly lettuce, clutched. clenched and heaved the nettles, mustard and errant brambles, gingerly plucked the spurge, dug out the creeping buttercup, ruthlessly crushed Jack-by-hedge, snapped bindweed, snapped bindweed, snapped bindweed, snapped bindweed, remorselessly snapped bindweed. This was sappy hand to hand combat, a maelstrom of broken roots and leaves, of biternate incised, pedate serrated, lanceolate obtuse and peltate acute. By the other end of the bed, the field student was the victor of a battle in a ritual war all ready lost. The piles of limp leaves beside him on the battlefield, around, under and about the coiling, twisting, climbing legumes foretold of yet another vigorous and perennial resurgence; an uprising only temporarily stalled, and impossible to quell. Above all the futility of his opposition were the ants. We assure ourselves our opposition is worthily 'chemical' free. The ants it seems, may be farming the blackfly aphids via a husbandry of delicate* and complex biochemical means

We gathered up the leaves, those victims of our brute mentality, and sought redemption via the compost heap. We returned to the runner bean field, a relatively huge area area dominated by the pylonesque architecture of the field student's more constructive mind. We observed for some time immeasurable the applications of the ants, their resolute Stakhanovism. Under the bushy vines of the Scarlet Emperors we found ourselves calmed, perhaps under a tranquilising influence of the true mistresses (or mistress) of the site.

Red Ants, Blackfly and Scarlet Emperors
Bed 1, Plot A - June 15th 2013.

1 comment:

  1. The field student has just asked me to convey his unease with the word, 'delicate' to describe the ants. He told me that his experience as a blackfly involved some quite rough handling at the feet and mandibles of the ants. It's all a matter of scale; when you are a blackfly, an ant is by no means diminutive. His other 'unease' concerns the 'unfortunate' coincidence of Red, Scarlet and Emperor with propagandised soviet labour.