I loved carving
roads and rooms and rhymes
into bare ground
with the art supplies
dropped by generous trees
(Autumn scraffiti!)Suddenly the sweet-smelling earth
that was my blank canvas
became personal and patterned
like crop signs appearing
with delicious secret meanings.
Then I spent hours playing in the nooks and crannies I’d created,
my imagination happily wallowing
in the newborn spaces.
There were stores to keep
and cottages in deep woods,
always with a corral for my horse
(my loyal bicycle with yellow banana seat).
I felt fully alive scratching out my art
through masses of fallen leaves.
Now, in the Autumn of my life,
I find myself outside and covered with soil and debris
much of the time.
When I’m not designing and building gardens
I’m doing “manicures” on bits of earth
grown tangled up, troubled and tightly pressed.
I’m thrilled when we’re hired by people
who’ve got a big mess
and feel overwhelmed
and can’t see the small bites.
I love the invitation to draw near to the chaos
and help put things right
…to come to their out of sorts places
and trim, prune, weed, shape and sort
until they’re singing again,
freeing both plants and their people
disentangled and calm.
I love it
….this sense that we’re carving oxygen and order
into spaces clogged with constriction.
I SO dig seeing living things come unfettered,
making room for beauty to stretch out cramped and achy legs
and make herself at home again.
Each time it feels as if,
deep down in my own overcrowded places,
there comes a release from more clutter
and I can see more clearly
Love reaching out to soothe and sort the tangles inside of me,
leaving carvings in my soul
like the paths and patterns
left by my childhood rake
so many Autumns ago.