Posts tagged ‘gardening’

April 2, 2014

by Cynthia
Spring Lambs on Walnut Ridge

Spring Lambs on Walnut Ridge

We had two new lambs born last week on Walnut Ridge. When I bought my first pair of sheep I named them Charlie and Maude, after my grandparents.  My grandparents had nine children, affording me plenty of names for future lambs. Our first set of lambs was a male and female. We named the female Grace, after my mother’s oldest sister. We could have named the male Hugh, after the oldest son in the family, but that might have been a bit maudlin since we ate that lamb for Easter dinner the following year.  Since Maude’s latest lambs are both girls, no one gets eaten, and they will hopefully have a long life here on the farm producing more lambs. We named them Ruth and Ina, after my mother and her next youngest sister. Hopefully Grace will give us some lambs later this year, setting us off on another branch of the family tree.

After this interminably cold winter, things are finally coming back to life. The pastures are greening up, making the goats very happy as they were tiring of the winter’s fare of cane fronds and cedar bark. The fruit trees have swollen buds that thankfully survived the latest sub-freezing nighttime temps. The Bradford pears are in full bloom all over town; their white smelly blossoms beautify the city streets and make it hard for the allergy afflicted to breathe.  The Vandy co-eds, like pear blossoms, flood the streets in the Village near my office, dressed in sheer, flowy things, sashaying about in high wedges, chirping away on cell phones, buzzing with energy. Everything wants to move, to burst out, active and alive.

This winter was so long and frigid, despair hung around in the corners like spider webs. The usual tragedies seemed more potent and relentless; deaths, illness and lost causes seemed to suffocate hopefulness and faith. The darkness and cold felt interminable. And then a few days of sunshine and green and it is as if a light turns on and the darkness melts. Just as I am despairing of seeing new life, just as I am about to concede defeat to the cutworms or the root rot or the inherent folly of humanity, I walk out to the garden and there they are, little green shoots, or fuzzy yellowish fronds, or fat celadon leaves. The seeds I planted weeks ago will have pushed their way to the surface, drinking up the sun and turning themselves into little chlorophyll factories. I’d love to be as resilient as Nature, as dogged and determined. Maybe someday I will remember that recovery and emotional healing are like the emergence of spring plants: Just when we  think that nothing we are doing is creating change, we get a glimpse of new life. Things just get easier, things fall into place and symptoms finally recede.  We have a new sense of ourselves and are ready to grow in ways we could never have dreamed were possible. We just have to hang on.

In the depth of winter, I finally learned that within me there lay an invincible summer.   Albert Camus

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Precious!