Everything is blooming most recklessly;
if it were voices instead of colors,
there would be an unbelievable shrieking into the heart of the night.…
Spring has returned. The Earth is like a child that knows poems.
– Rainer Maria Rilke –
It has felt like a particularly long dark winter this year. Externally of course it hasn’t been. Its been mild and wet as far as our winters go. Plenty of frosty mornings breathing out to crispy, blue sky days, interspersed with grey, wild and wet to keep the soil sponge full and oozing. The season of winter calls on us to turn our focus inwards, to stoke the home fires and feed the soul, to remind ourselves what nourishes and supports us and to let go of what doesn’t. This year, we have all been called on to do this in ways not always comfortable and not always of our choosing and so the coming of spring this year, in all its fervent wild and colourful glory feels like an extra precious gift .
Day by day and row by row, the thigh high cape weed is making way for the crops to come. We’ve been working the spent brassica plants and the luscious biomass that the weeds offer so freely, back into the soil; building richness, life and structure to nourish the heavy feeding crops of summer. The end of winter can feel like a looming wave of chaos. Everything is overgrown, the crops are deciding whether to bolt to seed or offer up a steady spring harvest and we are wondering if we’ll ever get on top of it all.
With this our sixth spring here, our keen new intern on board and an inspiring team of weekly volunteers, things feel less overwhelming than before. We know that row by row the space will transform over the next few months. We know that despite all our best planning, adapting and rain dancing some crops will be bumper and many will not, some we will get in the ground on time and some the rabbits will devour to the ground, some things will surprise us and others will make us wonder what we’re missing…but somehow it will all even out in the long run, we trust, we learn, we’re grateful, we change.
I find hope in the hot house. The act of planting a seed is a profound gesture of hope. Seeds inspire both awe and wonder in me, enough to take my breath away and ponder the wisdom that rests within even the tiniest atom of this universe. With every seed planted there is a leap of trust and hope. Trust that the knowing of thousands of generations hides within this seed and it know exactly what to do and how to do it. I just have to get out of the way and let it happen. The intelligence of plants is far superior to our own and we have so much to learn from them.
“As small as the face of a seed can seem, it is in this small thing where the most powerful holy beings in the Universe have their homes and govern life”. -Martin Pretchel-