Friday, July 19, 2013

A Little Garden

It feels like generations of cats have pooped here.  While I was cold inside, out in this small slice of sun, I'm hot and sweating.  The flies buzz.  The poop hangs thick in the air.  My plastic bags rustle as I gingerly pick it out of the dirt, my hands swathed in the plastic.  All the dogs I never walked, all the cats I never owned, they seem to have chosen this small space by my front door to exact their revenge.

Yet when I'm done, this small section is reclaimed.  Not perfect, but at least it is my trash bag that wreaks, not my front patio.  I cover it with a tarp, a quiet "no pooping here" sign, if I spoke cat.  Even better are the smells of my new plants. Mint, lemon balm, daisies, the fresh potting soil.  For now it looks mostly like I've stacked rows of pots in the way, but eventually... eventually this little garden will look like a garden. Eventually it will be a small green place of peace.

I feel a peaceful joy tending this small patch of earth.  Watering, touching the soft green leaves.  It is small, like my new beginning here in Salem, but the Christmas cactus is about ready to bloom and the daisy has flowers.  I’m not sure what it will be come eventually, but for a beginning, it’s a hopeful one, one open to my dreams.

I come back inside to the novel.  It’s rough, newly transplanted as pieces of scene are tacked together.  It too is a small rough beginning, but I hope it will grow faster than my little patch of earth. I have, after all, been working with it for far longer.  Still, with patience, I sit down to write and edit and hope, and the same quiet joy makes me smile.

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