Quack-grass like Apathy

DSC_0527After fourteen hours on the road, across two and a half provinces I arrived at the memorial garden dedicated to my son and daughter, in what has become my annual trek to plant the garden. It did not help that dark rain clouds hovered, and cold north winds blew, or that the harsh winter had killed off perennials of a half dozen years. Quack-grass had spread like apathy and despair, it crept in to take over where a lush garden thrived. As I stood shivering all I could feel was the extreme loss that had brought this garden into being. I felt like the lone still-grieving mother doing battle against the universe. In my tiredness, I saw the garden as unkempt, impossible to clean and full of weeds. And the beauty was hidden from my eyes.
I paused, and breathed a prayer. Surely the quack-grass should not dominate!
After the next morning’s rain and a good night’s sleep, I returned in the sunshine to discover, there was still much beauty here, the fountain was flowing, as was the offer from camp staff to help dig … spirits lifted.

Today the garden lesson for me was in persistence for beauty, that joys fought for are worth the battle, that passion for beauty nourishes the soul.
People have come alongside. Unearthing beauty and joy is my challenge and delight in the garden and in my day … so let me laugh in this moment, let me keep the weeds at bay … and let me use Round Up wherever I need to.
In preparation for this year’s garden trip, weather worn signs needed replacing and rewording.
What can you say as an epitaph for two vibrant young people?
In my search for words I came across this poem, and knew it was the one.

I Will Not Die an Unlived LifeDSC_0508
I will not live in fear
of falling or catching fire.
I choose to inhabit my days,
To allow my living to open me,
to make me less afraid,
More accessible,
to loosen my heart
until it becomes a wing, a torch, a promise.
I choose to risk my significance,
to live so that which came to me as seed
goes to the next as blossom,
and that which came to me as blossom,
goes on as fruit.

Dawna Markova

Photos are from previous years at the garden, evidence that beauty is present, and needs to be fertilized.

6 thoughts on “Quack-grass like Apathy

  1. Oh I can so relate to your gardening experience of the quack grass and winter kill and looking beyond to the potential beauty. Gardening has taught me many things over the years and even if our summers are terribly short, there is much value in absorbing oneself in the hours of work and patience it takes to cultivate its beauty. Gardening is my best therapy. Had I known you were at your peaceful garden recently I would have made a point of visiting it at the time…but I will visit it soon. Be well in God’s loving arms Jocelyn.

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  2. This poem speaks so eloquently of the spirit you live your life by, Jocelyn. I cannot be where you are today in that garden of memories and beauty yet to be discovered, but my spirit is! God blessed you with the eyes to see the good and the patience to cultivate it in everyone you meet.
    Penny

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  3. Once again, your camera lens and your words have touched me, Jocelyn. To keeping the weeds at bay and nourishing through the beauty that is always there (but is so easy to miss). Hugs…

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