Meadowsweet was the name for a place that can only be described as a cabin on top of a hill in the woods in Gay Head, MA on the island of Martha's Vineyard. (The town of Gay Head changed its name to Aquinnah after the Meadowsweet Log era which was 1984-1995.)

The Meadowsweet Logs will be published as a book in the future, but we thought you'd be interested in  these previously unpublished writings by Brian Daley, Lucia St. Clair Robson and others. (Editor's notes in green.)

Meadowsweet: Spirea latifolia





Spirea latifolia
Family Rosaceae

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Excerpt from The Meadowsweet Logs:

(Lucia:) 8 August, 1987 - Saturday -

     We arrived Monday afternoon, just in time to unload & head back to E'town for the Possible Dreams auction.  Walter Cronkite bid $3500 to watch Commander U.S.A with us.
     Actually, we brought no TV with us.  I swear, we brought no TV.  Well, almost no TV.  We have a watchman, which is like watching through the wrong end of a telescope.
     I staked a claim in the garret.  Laid a bed platform across two chairs, and set up the new Epson.  Fortunately, I don't stand up to write or "I have a hunch" would take on a whole new meaning.
     Tomorrow, a full moon & o-sashami on "the rock", at the former Daffodil's.

(Brian) It's not easy to say "I love Meadow Sweet" in some new, inventive way - but there it is.* (*Or at least, the desire to say it...)
     More than anything, in leafing through this log, I'm overwhelmed by Ken's industry & competence.  I lie in the hammock, fantasizing about being 1/2 so capable.  A typical entry would be:

6/1: - Built small thermonuclear power plant near E. end of Meadow.
     P.M. - Won M. Vineyard marathon.
6/2: Environmental Impact Statement for proposed Meadow Sweet Observatory passed with standing ovation by U.S. Army Corps of Engineers; Quahog Indians volunteer en masse to serve as hod-carriers, w/out pay.
     P.M.: Refereed Strategic Weapons ban between US & USSR; weather continues fair...

Well: weather does continue fair.  We listen to NPR's "All Things Considered" in the Hammock in the evening; have the tape deck plugged into the deck outlet right now (Sunday, 8:15 A.M.) w/ Some Mozart (Jupiter Symphony) wailin'. Yeah!

Play me dat riff, Wolfie!  Y'all be bad, my man!
     Bruce Springsteen is, of course, reserved for drive-time.  We New Jerseyians are obligated by law to listen to the Boss whenever we're in an automotive vehicle.  I'm pretty sure there's something to that effect in some kinda codicil to the U.S. Constitution,  No, really...

(Much Later)
     Nobody needs fear the extinction of the Daddy-long-legs; the species is thriving, at least here.  The little perverts keep trying to crawl into bed w/ us, but Lucia & I are rather conservative in certain senses, & I'm obliged to eject the uninvited arachnids w/ the alacrity of a Hard Rock Café bouncer.
     My sister Myra, her husband & children & another couple & their children were up for a week or so, renting a (huge) house out on the North Road by Tea Lane.  It looked like a transplanted Gstaad ski-job- a bit unsettling, really; a relief to get back to Meadow Sweet & the wide-open spaces, where men're Men & Women're nervous...

     The much-vaunted Harmonic Convergence (Aug. 16-17) seems to have come & gone w/out kicking up much of a fuss on M.V.; too bad, because I was hoping Certain Elected Officials would vanish frm. the face of our planet.  So much for easy solutions: I guess we're gonna have to do it ourselves.
     But not this August.  Summer here's too pretty for revolution.
     Just heard the WMVY, astrological Forecast. Jupiter is in Retrograde & Gemini is in the House of Mercury ~ no doubt while Mr. Mercury is off at work.  These are perilous times we live in.  Still, the sky doesn't appear to be falling (albeit it's yet early in the day) & I'm content.
     Where wuz I?  Oh yeah: we barbequed the other night, policed up faithfully but the foil-covered grill was left to the mercy of the much-feared Meadow Sweet Night-Marauding Creatures!! They apparently devoured the tin-foil.  The Scene of the Crime resembles some sorta weird Raccoon-Frat Party aftermath.  I hope none of them tries to get thru an airport metal-detector any time soon...

Guard: Hey, you! Ya made my machine light up!
Raccoon: What? Uh, uh, what 're ya pickin' on Me for?  It's because I'm a Raccoon,  isn't that it?
... ... & etc.

     Lucia attests that Vineyard August is here in earnest; it's no longer necessary to lick envelopes, since they seal by themselves.  Usually w/out letters in them.
     Given a certain lassitude towards writing, that's just as well.  
     A recommended self indulgence is: lying in the hammock & tuning the portable radio to 89.7FM Boston, at 5:00PM for "All Things Considered."  Comfort & civilized news ~ what could be better?  I mean, that you can do with you clothes on? Sorta?  (Also: Prairie Home Companion, Sat., 6PM ~ 89.7FM)

(Later (by a week or so) ~
     Caroline Kennedy-Schlossberg keeps cruising by the nude beach at Philbin to check out my tan.  She writes," I dig Science Fiction writers !!" in the sand with her toe when she thinks I'm not looking.  Lucia insists she's just suffering frm. sunstroke & so'm I.
     Anyway, Lucia's unperturbed.  She's starting a knockout new novel about medieval Japan* & knows I like to be with a winner.  Now if that goddam Christopher Reeve would just stop looking at her...  (* L's note: This rave review based on a quick scan of the first page - )
     There's news of teachers' strikes; can a one-way ferry ride into exile ~ the mainland ~ be far behind?

      I'm unperturbed because I know what Caroline is really writing - "Get the riff-raff off the beach."
     Speaking of riff-raff... we went up to the Lighthouse for the obligatory sundown, & there was a skunk policing the grounds.  He didn't bother anyone, & I can assure you, no one bothered him.
     We've gotten a lot of work done.  No - really. we have.  The secret is to leave the TV & not to leave a forwarding phone number.  About the only phone calls we get are for Aunt Gladys.  I can answer, with a clear conscience, that I'm not Aunt Gladys.
     Without Brian's Buick, however, we've lost a little caché as Gayhead residents. - My brother, Bud said hitchhikers put their thumbs down when they saw the big, green Jersey bomb top the rise. 

    (Brian's note:)     With reference to the previous passage, I might make so bold as to point out that when I drove that 10,000 lb., rusty torpedo around up here, the locals understood that the radiator cap could be used as a sort of aiming device, & demonstrated courtesy in keeping with that fact.
            We now return you to our normally scheduled Lucia.

     ... Well, no; we don't, after all.
     She's too busy touching up her new novel, which is about the vengeful Samurai vendetta of Cat on the Tokaido Road.  I've read the first 70 pages & am now sure I'll be provided for, by a literary superstar, in my fast-approaching old age.
     We're not as sequestered as we thought up here; two whitebread Jehovah's Witnesses showed up in a Blazer.  This, at time (Sept. 8th,  the Day after Labor Day) when you couldn't get a paramedic to make a housecall here anymore.
     Lucia was upstairs writing & I was reading on the deck but, unfortunately for the obvious comedic possibilities, had my pants on.  They were caucasoid, 30-ish male & female, dressed politely in clothing that was stylish early in the Carter administration.
     They explained how they'd come to bring me the comfort of the Revealed Word.  It would've been too involved to explain to them how Words, some Revealed but most of 'em Not, are what've been giving me a headache lately, & that's why my Epson's switched off & I'm reading "Doonesbury!"  And simply mooning them didn't seem quite appropriate, tempting though it was.
     So, I told them that a covey of Shiite mullahs had taken up residence in the next meadow over & that I'd heard them crying out in the dusk that they could out-quote scripture against, and refute, the most Knowledgeable of Infidels.  The two missionaries left skid-marks; spinnin' that 4-wheel end-for-end & headin' off to do battle w/ Allah. Mecca, watch you tushie...

     On a happier note, Virginia & The Great Marvini, who've taken over Daffodils (Gay Head Cliffs) run a "Full Moon Sushi Nite" during the height of the lunar cycle.  Marvini  is Marvin Jones, Cajun & Sushi chef supreme & part-time Super hero ; Virginia is Virginia, & many of you reading this already know what I mean.  World's Champ Free Spirit.
     These intermittent oink-outs are great, as long as you're agile enough to dodge people fainting w/ delight.

     Sad note:  we saw a car returning frm. Gay Head, going toward Chilmark, w/ a deer lashed across the hood ~ victim of a road accident, I guess.  Apparently there is a hunting season on the Vineyard, which is in glaring contrast to our experience here.
     National & International news seesaws, & it makes no difference on Meadow Sweet that I've been able to measure.  The idea of shotputting the radio into a dumpster & boycotting newspapers sounds better & better.  But to be candid, that wouldn't make much difference to this little knoll in the woods & its real residents either, would it?  The year~rounders ~ who serenade by day & forage by night ~ don't notice.
     There're High Paradigms of right & wrong, & this place is 'way over on the plus side.  Sometimes, at night, I wake up thinking I'm somewhere else & realize , to my great comfort, that I'm here.  Other times, other places, I wake up thinking I'm at Meadow Sweet ~ to my profound disappointment, when I realize it's a dream.

Sept. 19, 7:40 AM
     Written in haste - rushing to make a ferry. Another Sweet Summer - 

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