Tag Archives: garden

I want more than survival for you

It’s a stunningly beautiful day outside, the first day this year I’ve been able to go out and sit in the sun and not have to dry condensation off the chair or table on the back deck, or wait for the morning light to warm up the cool that the night brought to the city. I just spent about an hour with the garden: first, reading about all the edibles/vegetables that we planted (cucumber, herbs, zucchini, tomatoes, carrots, lettuce, spinach, cabbage, broccoli, strawberries); then I went down and examined all the new growth, hunted around the yard for sticks and tall things that could be appropriated and used as stakes for pole beans and snow peas, which need to get planted right now. I could spend all day there, but I’m pretending that I’m a writer, that writing is my work, and so I’m inside at the computer — with the door open, I can still hang out with the spring morning sounds: the bird trills and the rush of crow’s wings, hummingbird shuzhes, bees and flies and the hush of breeze through the new spring leaves (those lovely leaves that are now shading my what-was-once-full-sun garden plot).

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So, here you are, Jen, at the computer, fingers at the ready. You’ve left the deeply human work of physically tending to food that will nourish people you adore so that you can play with words. And what is it that you want to say? What was so important that you needed to bring your skin in from the sun, your ears in from the airplay of birds, your eyes in from watching the puppy watching the squirrel in those newly-leafed trees? What brought you back to the cave? What kept you from travel today?

(Who’s asking those questions anyway?)

I set my timer for twenty minutes and go. I want to write about gender and costuming, I want to think about the uses and message of this blog, I want to talk about worry for my friends who are sick and struggling, I want to write to you something exquisite about the kind of love that can blossom when you thought you had used up all your chances — body love, self love, love for another. Love from another for you. Continue reading

Amending my soil

Our cucumber plants -- and one curving cuke!This morning it’s dark enough at 5:35 am that it makes sense for me to have a little candle at my writing desk, which makes it feel more like I’m up with the “holy dark.”  It’d be quiet outside in my little San Rafael neighborhood if not for the loud industrial garbage truck, chewing and hollering its way through the early morning.

There’s a creek that I pass on the way to the bus stop in the mornings, it’s a block away, loaded down and over-banked with trees, and the water’s clearish enough that I can see that there are no fish there, very little apparently living in the water.  The mallards like the small sand bar.  It’s a tidal creek, which is something I continue to appreciate about so many of the bodies of water around here — the idea that they’re breathing with the bigger tides, are connected that way. Lake Merritt’s like that, would be shallower some mornings on my way to BART, and other mornings would be full up around the legs of egrets and herons.

Yesterday there was a turtle floating in the water, floating horizontal, head just poking out up into the air. I’d been looking for, hoping for turtles, wanted the little sand bars and side-of-the-stream rocks and logs to get cluttered with their roundness on hot days.  This is the first one I’ve seen, but I think I’m hopeful (could I be hopeful, do I want to be, after reading Derrick Jensen yesterday)? I think I’m gratified, I think I’m just glad. Glad that something’s living in the water, the water’s not dead.

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