a weekly schedule for soul maintenance
monday: douse with water warmed in the hose heated by the spring sun. watch the water sink rapidly into the roots and say a prayer for quick uptake, as it was a dry weekend.
tuesday: weeds also flourished with yesterday’s water. spend some time pulling them and look at their new-formed, delicate roots, as translucent and ephemeral as a cobweb crossing a walking path. say a prayer of gratitude for their lives, even as they don’t fit your purpose for this plot. encourage your slow-growing bell peppers and cabbages with a kiss.
wednesday: the leaves of your basil, glowing languidly in the afternoon sun, peppery scent rising, are too enticing for the japanese beetles to resist. one by one, you shoo them away, unable to convince yourself to squash them. the mere thought is tiring. you say a prayer that they find sustenance elsewhere, and find some lemonade, sweet and cool, after the sun.
thursday: water. so much water. you blacken the earth and watch it sink in until it spills up and overflows the little impressions in the ground cupping each beloved stalk. you delight in the many rivulets cascading out, searching for a new place to sink down deep. there is a great fecundity before you. you say a prayer for bounty and abundance, in gratitude and expectation.
friday: there are little tendings to do, a yellowed leaf on the eggplant, a shooting stalk of flowers on the basil, all to pinch away and keep the focus on the roots down and the green leaves up. you leave the garden with fingers pungent and stained green. you say a prayer but are not sure what it’s about.
saturday: this is for the real business! gone will be the weeds you missed during the week, same for the beetles, exterminated with a grinning vengeance. this time, you will have courage! you pray that your anger finds expression only in the things capable of withstanding its destruction, the invasive species with no natural predators.
sunday: you say a prayer that nothing goes wrong, as today, the gardens in the sky demand your entire attention.
Written December 19, 2017 from the writing prompt “heart like a garden”.