My Garden in early May 2009
It is spring.
It is spring.
Which means one thing: manure.
Many people think I’m nuts. (For a variety of very good reasons. . .some which I consider complimentary.) But one of my favorite days of the GARDEN LITURGICAL CALENDAR is Manure Delivery Day. It’s not quite a Feast Day. . .but awful close.
I get ten yards of aged cow manure every April. It goes on all of our garden beds. It smells. . .well, it smells like, life. And of spring days on the farms around my childhood home in Michigan.
My plants love it. And the garden beds–perennials, roses, shrubs and herbs–get tidied and weeded and feed.
In my last blog Suchin posted a great comment about the need for discipline. . .on this journey toward understanding (and living) our life as dance. It got me to thinking. And here’s where the garden metaphor helps me. Renowned British gardener, Gertrude Jekyll talked about great gardens as a “sense of profusion within severe lines.”
It is the lines, ironically, which allow for the freedom (or dancing).
Just as knowing (internalizing) the steps in dance gives me the freedom to be inventive and creative.
Just as knowing (internalizing) the notes in music gives jazz musicians the freedom to improvise, and literally make magic.
When people see my garden, they comment that “it looks so natural and effortless.” Precisely. What they may not see is how much work it takes to create an environment or canvas for that kind of artistry.
I get hung up, however, if my focus is solely on the discipline, and only for the sake of the discipline. It’s like concentrating (or paying attention) for the sake of concentrating. And in the end, I never really SEE the garden.
The other problem is that when I focus only on the discipline (we do the same thing mentally when we’re trying to “detach” ourselves from a negative attitude), I tend to see only the goal, or where I should be, and therefore, how far I have yet to go. Which means that I don’t allow myself the freedom to enjoy or savor or embrace this moment or any of the moments along the way.
Now, I need to practice a little discipline and go out and shovel manure. (I could make a joke about the similarity in preparing for a sermon, but that would be too easy. . .) So. I will work. I will practice gardening. And, I will savor the day (if I remember to take my Ibuprofen).
On the news and notes front. Facebook is changing. No more “fan” pages. Now it’s “like it” pages. It’s all beyond me. I don’t care what they call it (although the last time a girl said she really “liked me,” was high school and it cost me my varsity jacket. . .she never did give it back. . .but that’s another story for another time). What I do know is that My Facebook Page is a great bulletin board to post and get information about upcoming events. And, enjoy a DAILY PAUSE REMINDER. Join us and tell your friends. . .For more garden photos go to Terry’s Garden.
Every tree and plantin the meadow seemedto be dancing, thosewhich average eyes wouldsee as fixed and still.Rumi