Skip to main content

The sweetness and the sorrow.

I don't even know why I keep doing it but I do.

I water and prune these unfortunate roses planted here in the most unfortunate of small spaces between my front porch and my front walk. 

Don't get me wrong. I love a rose and, time was, gently nurtured many in my beds, temperamental as they were. Rosebuds are innocent and lovely but these grew into a wily species with ugly thorns that grip as you try and go your way. They seem to want to spread directly over the walkway so as to impede any progress at all. I can't help but wonder what was the purpose of planting them here because, truly, these are the stuff of a medieval fairy tale.

Giving me further reason to question the prudence of my predecessor are the azalea bushes that come after my roses. Don't hear what I'm not saying, an azalea bush is a welcome sight to behold, blossoming brilliant and colorful. They give me hope again after a long, dreary winter. 

For about two weeks.

Meanwhile, the trouble with these is that they obstruct and overwhelm and threaten to overtake the garden altogether. As if that weren't enough, they've been infected with a nasty vine for which there is no cure. I'll be honest and say that I've taken to only attempting to uproot these vines one at a time as they appear. I admit it's a much bigger problem than I am able to fully address so I just do the best I can with the energy I have. 

With the weeding and the mulching and the watering and the fair to middlin', I've become drained and dirty and discouraged. Each session reminds me that I am not the gardener I used to be. 

Depending on perspective, it's difficult to judge whether the azaleas or the roses present the most challenge. 

From the mailbox at the bottom of the driveway, I tisk tisk at the asymmetry of the azaleas while simultaneously lamenting the wickedness of the vines snaking themselves about the roots. It's hard to be mad at an azalea flower who keeps blooming under the circumstances even if it only for a little while.

From my front porch rocker, I wonder if I have what it takes to uproot these roses altogether and relieve myself and any who come in contact with them of the pain they cause. They have drawn blood on more than one occasion and make it hard to love roses. Don't hear what I'm not saying 'cause I'll just keep doing what I've always done.

Perhaps, my slow and steady dedication will prevail and, eventually, this garden of mine will shape up in spite of the unruly vines and unfortunate judgement of the previous residents. 

Still and all, it's an exhausting business. Care-taking.

When we moved to this new garden, we brought along a remnant of our old one in two faded square planters full of last year's potting soil, thinking we'd freshen them up a bit later. You won't even believe what happened. The zinnias came back, hearty, thriving and golden. One sits next to the roses and the other by the azaleas.

For inspiration.


Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

Just get out the way, and let the gentleman do his thing.

Retired Memphis Police Department Chief Inspector Robert Jones came to my pool party the other day. Over hot dogs and fruit salad, he regaled his grandchildren with tales of his days in Special Services on the police force. That's SWAT to you and me.

Among those anecdotes, he spins a yarn that includes a tear gas capsule hidden on the motor of a car full of pimps and ladies of the night, effectively expelling these law breakers out of a Buick Electra 225, running crazy. Later, he would be appointed Chief Inspector, along with fellow officer James Bolden (who also served MPD director), climbing his way up the career ladder with an excellent work ethic. But, before all that, he was a regular joe on the beat, paying his dues. Only, this fiery, young Irishman was going to do it his way.

They called him The Flame. Not only for his ability to run like one but, there was also that shiny red hair. In his youth, his stubborn independence got him into some trouble so he channeled that and mad…

I was so scared to face my fears.

Why You even trust us with so much, I can't even imagine. We alternate between pumping triumphant fists in the air and rocking quietly in the corner, squeezy eyes and knitty brows, vulnerable to the next thing next. In a matter of weeks, issues that include extreme trauma, mental illness, genetic disorders, and tired, old grudges, which serve to poison the waters, pass through our hands. We stand, arm in arm, carefully considering whether we are meant to dodge or take the shots:What are we supposed to be to learning?
Can we set it gently to the side and move along?
Is this our burden to bear for a season?
Who is wearing hearts on sleeves?
and should we?It's hard to say in a world of emotions but I KNOW our hearts are true. Even in their ugliest states, we keep it real. Sometimes, we're all Daigle, inspired and fortified, but, as many times as not, we're blasting Adele, accidentally alienating the ones we love and raw as can be. Let's just keep the Gungors, Eminems …

You built me palaces out of paragraphs.

You're so sure I don't hear your words. Maybe you think there's too much weary history for me to contend with New & Fun. You hear told of the time before yours and sometimes you feel alone. Maybe you've even wondered if I'm still up to the challenge.
You assume too much, Love Child, because yours are the words I've been waiting for all my life.
So many words.
My time before you taught me to talk less and hear more but I sift through ALL your words and listen for your heart.
Without your words, how could I know that you sometimes say what you don't mean just because you feel too much to articulate?
Without your words, how could I know that you are unsure and insecure about who you might become?
How could I know, were I not listening, that you often hold back because you think it's not quite your time?
Without your words, how could I know how much you root for the underdog with a righteous anger?
Without your words, how could I know that you often …