End of June: cosmos blooming, zinnia seedlings popping up; week-old chicks trying out their new wings; leeks mostly harvested; some peaches rescued from the squirrels; picking my biggest crop of Gravenstein apples to make canned apples for the winter; first batch of borsch in freezer; making pickles today from my own cukes, onions, and peppers. Back in March? A strange, unpredictable spring, and yet...
The Telling that Changes Everything XI. March 4, 2012
We have it all: the numbing, merciless cold
and the beneficent sun rays rousing all the
juices of spring–animal, vegetable, human.
Will I lose my peaches because sun has
lured them into early bloom time and
a hoarfrost lurks around the corner? Last
night’s rain nurtures the new roots of leeks
and onion plants, brings insects and
earthworms to the surface where the hens
scratch and pounce, feeding on their native
diet. I pull them chickweed, which is
impervious to frost and relishes both rain
and sun. I am whole and hale in my aging
time, but I lose companions, like Odysseus
did. I walk, garden, eat well, create, to stay
lively, but even so my flesh being firm as
I approach seventy-five is a gift, one of
many I’ve had in my lifetime. To live
long is to lose much, yet I want to live
and do, as Susan says, the best I can.
I am able to write and publish books.
I am able to see into the souls around
me, even tame them, as the Little Prince
did. That, too, is a gift I must not abuse.
I carry my years lightly, and yet sorrow
sits on my heart for all the losses, for the
lack of wisdom, the inability, in so many
people, even to see what benefits them,
what helps them thrive. Yet the Great
Mother, our planet home, teaches us
the same lessons over and over. If we
don’t adapt, if we refuse to cope, if we
become passive and inert, if we say,
“It’s too hard,” we die. To live well,
to stay our whole life course and make
our final homeward journey, we have
only one choice: to pay close attention
to the world within and the world without.
The grain of the universe doesn’t destroy
us unless we let it.