“Shred or chop leaves and add them to the compost pile.”
The Old Farmer’s Almanac Gardening Calendar 2015.
This past weekend, I found my way back to my garden with a renewed intention for gathering up the leaves for composting. Six months ago, over the Memorial weekend, a driver’s speeding car left my mother, father and me with injuries that dad succumbed to in early June. Everything about life that was green, lush and promising turned weedy and harsh. Despite my attempts to sass up the garden’s spirit with purchases of bright potted plants and new layers of cedar-scented mulch, my once percolating sanctuary appeared bruised and sad.
The exception was the tulips that for a time, erupted in brilliant shades of purple, red and orange. Like that raucous group of energetic friends who pop up at your house ready to party, they brought with them a lively air of colorful enchantment that contrasted against the garden’s languishing fatigue.
While raking leaves near my square-box, I noticed a moth sputtering amidst the pile. I lifted her gently with my index finger, hoping she might be revived and find her way back to the migratory path. After a few attempts at fanning her scaled wings, she tumbled to the ground, her mildew-yellow flesh and club-antennae, buried and indistinguishable in the mountain of foliage.
Her faulty lift and plunge serve as a metaphor of my own over these ensuing months. With autumn’s arrival, my lift can be freighted, and then sometimes I soar. Each day is new. Each is different. I am strengthened by steadfast love and the occasional index finger when needed.
My gentle though unsteady recovery, inspired by a moth-ancestor reminded me that death and life are celestial navigations where deep healing is evolutionary rather than revolutionary and the moon, while mysterious and shadowy on one side, provides an illuminating horizon on the other. Unlike my moth-ancestor, I’ll never fly in a straight line to that curious source, but I’m determined to follow the light. ###
Stay green, stay square…Pb
A few things that make me happy!
1. My year-long course on urban gardening to plan my growth for next year in the Maplewood, NJ Greenhouse.
Pamela Booker, the host of greens4squares.com, is an author, creative thinker and educator, who dreams of green planet issues, social change, and a world where sustainability is a lifestyle. Also see my website: pamelabooker.com/