Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Hippo bird day two ewe

Today is the professor's birthday. It's been a rough week. So rough that I didn't have a card, or a present, or even remember to say happy birthday until I'd been up for an hour...and we're leaving tomorrow AM for Black Sheep Gathering in Oregon, so time is short.

This is my tribute to the professor. Here are some Estes Park Wool Market photographs that I took to show off aspects of who he is.

He is physically big. He loves the natural world, and each time I encounter a new landscape with him, I learn more. He knows the names of the animals, the bugs, the plants, and even some of the mountains. It turns out that the professor "fits" in the Colorado landscape. He never has to crouch under lowlying trees like in our neighborhood. He never has to slouch or hit his head.

Although the professor likes his day job, he's also a great photographer. He's patient. He waits for the llama to lift her head so he can catch her pose, standing in front of a mountain.

The professor is humble, but he's an award-winner. (this picture is of the Alpaca fleece competition, it was huge and some of the fleeces were so fine that I'd confuse them with cashmere or paco-vicuna, which we also saw.) For instance, the professor won a Churchill Scholarship for his master's degree. This is like a Rhodes Scholarship for scientists. He had a full ride for a year at Churchill College, Cambridge, and then another scholarship for his PhD at Duke. He's bright, but he's patient and humble, too. It takes a lot for him to lose his temper, or pull rank.

The professor values what I do, even when I get weird hate mail, or can't contribute to paying any of our bills while I write this book. He's anonymous on my blog because I don't want him to get any more mail addressed to him, but he didn't ask to be nameless...he copes with all this without complaint. He values everything I write, every handmade meal or garment I produce, and he never says, "Was that worth the time it took?" He knows that good things, meaningful things, take time. (photo is of Swedish style Lovikka mittens at Estes Park)

A while back, I wrote this poem for him. (I was really into poetry until my writing had to uhh, pay some bills.) I feel even more strongly about this now that the professor is working so hard to make my book a reality. Please help me celebrate his 34th birthday!
Leave him your good wishes in the comments!

You are my cup
for the professor

You are the cup.
You fill me up.
You are the cup
Holding my pens, pencils, scissors
You help me communicate to the world
As I reach out to you
You are the cup
Of milk that appears when I bake cookies.
Everyone knows life is better with
Milk and cookies.
You are the cup
With which I never need a straw
Because I want to touch you
plastic cool condensation
Pottery heat intimate
Between my lips.
You are the cup
That keeps my life full
-but not overflowing.
Without a cup like you,
The world would be so thirsty.
You are my cup.

--© 2007 Joanne Seiff
(please do not reprint without permission.)


Blogger Melissa said...

Happy Birthday Professor!
What a lovely tribute, Joanne - and a great poem.

Safe Journeys and Warm Homecomings.


June 20, 2007 at 2:47 PM  
Blogger annmarie said...

happy birthday to the professor :)
I hope you have many more lovely journeys together.

June 20, 2007 at 4:13 PM  
Blogger vanessa said...

happy birthday professor!

joanne, aren't you lucky to have found the love of your life?

June 20, 2007 at 6:15 PM  
Blogger Romi said...

Happy happy birthday, Professor!!! May the coming year be the best ever!

June 20, 2007 at 9:54 PM  
Blogger e's knitting and spinning blog said...

Happy Birthday Professor!!!

June 21, 2007 at 8:09 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

what a lovely poem. happy birthday professor! have a wonderful time at bsg. wish i could be there.

June 21, 2007 at 8:57 AM  
Blogger Cathy said...

Oh - how perfect is that entire post as a BD present? Tell the Professor I'll name one of my baby daylilies for him - he can pick which one when they have all bloomed.

Have fun this weekend!

June 21, 2007 at 11:01 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

My comment has nothing to do with your entry today (although happy birthday, prof, and nice tribute, Joanne), but I had to share something I came across today while searching for a kohlrabi photo (really). A knit-happy blogger made amazing cupcake decorations that fellow knit-happy people may go nuts for. Check it out:

June 21, 2007 at 2:06 PM  
Blogger Brenda said...

Happy Birthday to the Professor!

Lovely poem Joanne. :)

June 24, 2007 at 5:24 PM  
Blogger Donna D said...

Happy Birthday, Prof! Hope you had a chance to celebrate while in Oregon!

June 26, 2007 at 2:20 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hippo birdy, professor! thanks for the bug advice!

June 28, 2007 at 10:40 PM  
Blogger Jennifer said...

Happy Birthday Professor. Okay, I found this page a bit late, but I was pleasantly surprised to see the photo of professor kneeling to take a photo of the llamas in the RV area of the Estes Park Wool Market. My family was camped out there and my mother saw professor taking the photos! I was in a spinning class during the day. Isn't Estes Park lovely?

July 7, 2007 at 1:23 PM  

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