Saturday, November 22, 2008

my little winter garden

We're fast approaching the Thanksgiving holidays and I thought I'd get a jump because I've got lots to list. We could be here a while. Stuff I'm thankful for, take one:

I get to watch my dog run in her dreams
and destuff unsuspecting fluffy toys. Bliss.

I'm amazed that fifteen months ago my cat was diagnosed with a cancer that vets said left her three months to live. I can't say how thankful I am that she remains strong and stubborn, bolder by the day. She walks across my head every morning to scold me into consciousness.

I am glad for my mind-boggling fear of my own mortality because of all it motivates me to do.

I cherish my parents in ways that are humbling.
And I admire how their lives exhibit their virtue and values.

I'm grateful for having known my bodhisattvas--all the folks I've wronged--and how much they stay in my mind and heart. I appreciate those hard lessons and I hold onto them.

It's lovely to see my brother in love all these years.

I am thankful for the people in my life. The ones I see often.

Less often.

Even less often.

And not nearly enough.

I'm thankful for the people who know me to the root.

I'm glad for my health, such as it is, breathtakingly free of guarantees.

I'm thankful for all the writing I've gotten to do these last years. I'm amazed by the way it's taught me discipline, bit by bit, so much so that a story collection now has a project plan. I'm thankful how much things just continue to look up and even in the spells when they don't, I've still got it pretty damn good if I just pay attention.

I appreciate all the dogs I've met through the volunteer work I do, how forgiving they've been after being beaten, fought, neglected, abused, and disregarded. I learn the most important lessons of my life from them.

I'm thankful to have a yard to share with my dog--15/16th of it hers, the rest of it mine for the garden. I'm so glad to be able to bring baby onions and chard to the table for our Thanksgiving dinner. Everything is looking hearty, despite the subterranean tunnels the jays seem intent on digging to get to the happy, fat worms. Carrots and potatoes are snoozing away underground, not a peep yet. Likewise shallots, garlic, radishes. Here's the cast of characters making a radiant appearance this season.

Mustard greens struggled at first,
but they're finding their way.

Volunteer onions everywhere!

Kale, looking very primordial.

Bok choy--evidence of critters, but no critters in sight.

God light on my garden bed.

The chard was so limp and so pathetic at the outset
that I nearly pulled it all, but I'm glad I let it go.
It's the happiest plant in the garden.

Recommended gardening playlist:

The Littlest Birds, The Be Good Tanyas
Look At Miss Ohio, Gillian Welch
As Is, Ani DiFranco
Cold Water, Damien Rice
Driving North, Chris Pureka
Day is Done, nick drake
Everything Has Changed, William Fitzsimmons
My First Lover, Gillian Welch
Life within a life, Jesca Hoop
Because We Do, The Ditty Bops
Timbindy, Ali Farka Toure
Cello Song, Nick Drake
At My Window Sad And Lonely, Billy Bragg & Wilco
Amie, Damien Rice
Wrecking Ball, Gillian Welch
Welcome to My Life, Melissa Ferrick
Time Has Told Me, Nick Drake
Little Plastic Castle, Ani DiFranco
Beautiful Man, Lori McKenna
Elvis Presly Blues, Gillian Welch
California Stars, Billy Bragg & Wilco
Which Will, Nick Drake
Silo Song, Chris Pureka

And of course, I thank you for reading.