the writing and photography of Neil Kramer

Morning Dew


You need to grab nature wherever you can get it.


I walk on the cracked, gray, concrete of  the New York streets  to the McDonald’s across the street, the artificially colored arches calling to me, “Coffee!”

Before I can reach my destination, I face a challenge, like most explorers must.  I need to cross over a thin strip of lawn that separates the parking lot from the drive-thru from the main entrance.  This yard is green, and well maintained.  I try not to trample anywhere beyond the pathway.  The grass is wet and sparkly.   It is my morning dew.

I know I am deceiving myself by considering it morning dew.  I am trying to be poetic, to connect to Thoreau and Walt Whitman, even though I am in modern, decaying Queens.

There is a water hose curled up like a python near the drive-in sign that advertises the latest dollar meals.  I can see the hose.  I know it is there.  I know that a staff member must water the lawn every morning.  I know God is not sprinkling his natural goodness on this god-forsaken piece of land.    I have never seen this McDonald’s employee  in action, but I know that he was there before me, probably very unhappy about getting up so early to come to work to water the grass.

Even though I know the truth, I SEE the water on the grass as morning dew.  The idea that morning dew has appeared across the street from my apartment building, in Queens, on this little plot of lawn — well, it just makes me happy.  Water and grass.  Can you get more elementary than that?  With enough water and sun, a Garden of Eden could bloom, right on this spot, right next to the drive-in window of McDonald’s.

I kneel in front of the lawn.  I always rub the top strands of grass, watching the drops of water fly into the air.  I like when a droplet hits my skin and gives me a tickle.

I always wanted a dog, but have never owned one.  When I rub the wet grass, I can imagine the wet hair of a  little dog, playful after a refreshing bath, shaking the water from his body to and fro.

The morning dew greets me like that friendly dog.  Even when I feel lonely, one touch of the morning dew can change everything.


  1. Miss Grace

    This is a lovely shiny happy post. I think.

  2. Momo Fali

    Only you can make a God-forsaken piece of land in decaying Queens beautiful.

  3. teahouseblossom

    Everyone needs a patch of green grass.

    You should definitely get a dog!

  4. Mary @ Holy Mackerel

    Wonderful piece. Gotta take nature where it comes.

  5. TMWW

    You really should get a pooch Neil. You would absolutely love it! And you could take him for walks in the morning and he could add his own personal “morning dew” to that patch of grass…

  6. Neil

    The don’t allow dogs in this apartment building!

  7. AnnieH

    Is this a bad time to tell you that a friendly dog visited the McDonald’s lawn before you did?? And that may not be water glistening like morning dew from the blades of grass??
    Pull yourself together man and don’t be getting grass stains on your pants:>)
    luvya honey.

  8. Catheroo

    Oh, Neil, this is such a lovely post. And a lovely photo to accompany it. You make me want to take a photo of my lawn tomorrow. And I know it’s just the automatic sprinklers that water it, but tomorrow I will look at it differently.

  9. better safe than sorry

    over the past little bit, i’ve thought how a dog would bring something to your life. make sure your next place allows dogs, find a shelter and rescue one, the relationship you will develop with that dog is something no one can even begin to explain to you. and if you get a puppy, it’ll be a babe magnet!

  10. Chris

    I like the picture. The droplet gives you a “tickle”? Funny.

    I had a dog as a child (taken care of by Mom)- it’s much different owning a dog as an adult. This isn’t the popular thing to say, but owning a dog is a lot of extra responsibility, and I always offer to tell people the real story before they adopt or purchase an animal. Not just the cute puppy or Lassie parts.

    No dew on our grass yet.

  11. Beth

    Neil…time to move to an apartment that will take little cute fluffy dogs!! You wouldn’t regret it!

    Great post! Thanks so much!

  12. Caitlinator

    I love how you say, “modern, decaying Queens.” There aren’t many places that can be modern and decaying at once, but Queens sure fits that bill.

  13. Lola/Laura

    lovely post. a dog, Neil…you must have a dog. It would change everything!

  14. churchpunkmom

    Lovely post, Neil.. I miss my dog.

  15. katie

    did you get laid recently?
    what’s with the happy geek post?

  16. Twenty Four At Heart

    I need to learn to appreciate my morning dew. I think I take it for granted …..

  17. Venus

    Oh, it’s beautiful and so true. We spend so much time traveling to see great mountains and oceans and yet forget to take in the wonders at our doorsteps.

    But I must say, this is a completely new side of you. Unexpected.

    Gorgeous photo.

  18. Pearl

    What a pretty picture Neil. Whether from hose or mystery, it’s still a pleasure.

    And you have grass. We have another snowstorm.

  19. baronessvonbloggenschtern

    Please tell me that the morning dew didn’t smell vaguely of Alpo and/or asparagus…

  20. natalie

    i felt the same way when i saw grass in my city in turkey. we did have a yard for our building which was nice, but i really enjoyed getting outside the city where there weren’t any rules about what you could do in the grass. most places in the city didn’t allow walking or playing on the grass. you could sit on it but that was about it!

  21. V-Grrrl

    The Prozac is working. XO

  22. Annie

    You are right Neil, take nature where you find it. I think you need a camping trip and go get a dog, it will lift your spirits.
    P.S. Do a lot of research before getting a dog and remember it is a life commitment, but do it Neil, do it as life is short.

  23. Always Home and Uncool

    I touch the dew every morning when picking up my dog’s post-breakfast bowel movement.

  24. wench

    and the grasss doesn’t smell like wet dog or have any “surprises” for you 😉

  25. carma

    stopping by to check in on my fave mommyblogger! Wasn’t sure where you were headed with this post – and then you surprised me with an inspirational conclusion. Well done!

  26. Gwen

    Living here in the modern, butter white suburbs, I think I am going to have to learn how to appreciate my wonder bread where I find it.

    Morning dew is lovely, too, though.

  27. leah

    like this one, a whole bunch.

  28. lizardek

    Get a dog, Neil. You won’t regret it. Great post.

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