It was a wabi-sabi sort of day last weekend, when I met with poetry friends for a garden ginko. We took some time to slow down, walk around a winter garden, and notice the textures of foliage, stone and wood.
Camellias, jonquils, and other rarer blooms we couldn’t name were there for the keen-eyed poet to discover.
In these moments of reflection, we may have also learnt something about ourselves.
that once held the weekly wash
now cradle spring bulbs
. . . each day I find
a new skill to master
I haven’t watered the garden for more than a year. I take water restrictions seriously. I have not dobbed in the neighbours who water their lawns in the dark of night; I have not installed a rain water tank. I have just let the garden ‘be’.
Dark pink daisies by the letter box erupted first. A crowd of round, dense cerise heads watching me as I look for letters. Someone next door has pruned the buds from my star jasmine. I try not to let the anger rise. I’d been looking forward to the white star petals. I carry two bills and a writers’ newsletter across moss-rimmed bricks up the drive. Violets on long, vigorous stems emerge from every crevice of the rockery. Twisted vines of purple sarsaparilla cover the native frangipani. Lillipilli berries cluster amongst glossy rippled leaves.
After a weekend away we arrive home to a burst of yellow—freesias are out, all across the lawn, under the budding maple tree, amongst the azaleas which have never looked so well. I make smelly posies to fill the house with their grandma fragrance.
Today the lavender heads are opening and a flush of roses revel in unexpected spring rain. The strident tones of TV politicians denounce the other side, watering their crop of terror. I look at my miracle garden and wonder at the resilience of spring—someone, somewhere, is tending the garden.