I am getting a new piano. The old one had been reduced to a piece of furniture on which to pile years of school photographs. I think I got it free some 30 years ago. After wrestling it outdoors headed for the landfill, the front fell off, exposing the beautiful inner workings. You must see where this is heading. That’s right — yard art. In raised brass it says, “The materials used in this piano have been thoroughly tested and are of guaranteed excellence. Special reinforced bell metal slate insuring absolute purity of tone. This piano built to please true music lovers and to last a lifetime. Marshall Mendell Albany, New York, established 1836.”

Since it had fallen on its side and my two young women workers and I absolutely could not right it, we enlisted Jackson, owner of the excellent State Road restaurant in North Tisbury. He was happily reading his paper, minding his own business in his truck across the street. To his great credit he immediately rose to the task. Nothing quite like the kindness of strangers.

For utilitarian purposes the upright is now the other end of my wood pile. I am thinking of a climbing hydrangea to help it blend over the years. Remember, I came from Appalachia where it is not unusual to see washing machines in the yard. There is a Volkswagen Beetle filled with plantings parked off the street in Oak Bluffs near Ocean Park.

The intense wind last week totally destroyed the remaining tulips and sadly blew every blossom off my apple trees. I swear they were there a mere couple of days. I didn’t even have my annual visit of the Baltimore orioles. I do not mind rain, snow or cold but the wind can put me in a snit. I feel beat-up after a day working in it.

As one approaches the State Road coming down the Edgartown-Vineyard Haven Road, there is an absolutely stunning wisteria winding its way up a tree to the right of the house. It is higher than the house. Then, right up the street the one at Morrice the Florist is also something to write home about.

When my new asparagus roots arrived a month ago, I laid them in a trench maybe two feet deep. Supposedly one is to cover them slightly and then add more soil as they grow. I knew that wasn’t happening in my busy life. I covered them completely and added a few bales of hay as well. I was beginning to have some concern when a month passed, but this past week — there they are, over a foot tall, pencil-thin and flourishing. So there you have it. I think you can do pretty much whatever you want. Nature is forgiving.

I enjoyed Mother’s Day last Sunday in my own vegetable patch. My grandson and a friend dug paths and raised beds for several hours and one son brought me good dirt. It takes so little to make gardeners happy. I have opted for the raised-bed method this year. I have a drainage problem on this new site. It is heavy clay and holds the moisture, creating puddles. I’m making them less than three feet wide with wide paths. I see sitting down and weeding in my future.

I cannot stop thinking about the catastrophic oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. As I may have mentioned, I grew up in oil country. My area was known as the high-grade oil metropolis of the world. In its heyday, Bradford, Pa., was a thriving town. As children we played in and around the oil wells and pumping stations. Sorry, Mom, when you read this: there was a big lagoon of oil waste in the woods. My friend, Sandy, and I used to walk on it. The oil was so thick it supported our weight, but it undulated with our every step. It never occurred to me to think of my personal safety or the ecological implications. Oh! Carefree youth.

Wonder if we taxed every barrel of oil just $1, would it probably pay down the national debt?