October Garden

It is October. The garden sags under the weight of the year. Leaves wither and curl. Lupins droop and drag their seed pods on the ground. The Earth exposes her belly as the covering of plants dies away. Yet Winter has not yet wrapped her fingers around the life of this place. 

Japanese Lanterns hang every few inches, decorating the decay. Along the fence, clusters of flowers bloom. In the lawn, sprinkled with patches of weeds, dandelions hold up their heads to greet the sunshine. Bees still bumble about the garden, resting on the centre of the blossoms before taking off, legs covered in the fairy dust they will use to romance other blooms into existence. 

Just beyond the fence, cars whiz by. When the light turns, they idle in front of the house, their drivers unaware of the seasons turning in the garden, moving round and round, tunnelling through time like earthworms, causing everything near them to grow.

This was a little writing exercise I did for a wonderful creative writing course I’m taking with Jonathan Rogers called Writing with Anne of Green Gables . L.M. Montgomery is so talented at painting a visual scene with her words, but surprisingly, doesn’t rely that heavily on adjectives and adverbs. Rather, she uses really vibrant verbs and specific, concrete nouns. For our class we had to describe what we saw outside, but without using adjectives or adverbs. It’s a fun challenge!

And now, since this is my blog and not homework, here are some pictures of my garden! 🪴

Focused as a Flower

I wish I knew how to grow

with the single-minded purpose of flowers.

Up, up and ever increasing in beauty,

focused on the source of light and

undistracted by the tangle and clutter

of weeds and other plants nearby.

Neither thorns nor thistles

causing them to pause in self-doubt,

or think their mission would be better

if they were holding up

the heavy golden head of some other stem–

richness enough to be oneself.

Crimson and Gold

I continue to be enchanted by the beauty of fall..which this year has had a slow mellow warmth, like the flickering of a cosy fire, flames all crimson and gold. 

   

    
   
My kids, who had been peacefully playing inside, were very happy to discover where Mummy had snuck off to for a few quiet moments of photography! Pretty fun that even though I’m with them all the time, after 3 minutes away, I get greeted like a rock star! 😉

  

Sunning the Moon Belly

  

after a morning of spelling 
nursery rhymes
and writing practice
I take a moment’s break by myself
to sit on our garden bench in the sun

a tiny homeschool hiatus 
to sit quietly enough to hear 
the birds chirping and twittering
over the background hum
of city busses and summery lawnmowers
on this warm October morning

sun is supposed to be good
for this third trimester liver thing 
that has crept up on me again
so I expose my round belly
to glow like strange moon
blue veins faintly showing
in the bright sun

a small alien planet 
with the occasional surface ripple 
as the life within stretches and grows
just x-filish enough
to make me grin

A Cloak of Starlight

I go outside for a walk in the dark garden,

only two bare feet to hold up my heavy heart,

and after the warmth of the concrete driveway

surrender to the melancholic cool of the evening grass.

In the stillness of dusk

amid the silent flowers,

the sadness for my lost little love 

wraps me about like a cloak of starlight

poignant and piercing.
    
I hurry inside

to capture this poem,

preserve this tear like a crystal jewel 

and offer it to you, Jo,

the one whom I can give nothing

but the pangs of love.