The comment on my sidebar about writing in the garden is true. I don’t take my laptop outside, but while I’m working, cutting back, deadheading, and weeding, I think. It’s a writer’s truth that when we do the most mundane jobs like those in the Quotidian Mysteries: Laundry, Liturgy and “Women’s Work”, our minds are free to ponder. Our main computer is in the kitchen; all the better to keep tabs on the kids. When I can’t grab hold of a word, or a turn of phrase, I open the door to the broom closet next to my desk. Broom in hand, I sweep the floor, and usually, my dilemma solves itself.
As I worked my way through the garden, trying to embrace the weeds, it being Sunday, my thoughts traveled to the bible and how many of the stories and parables were told with farmers, vinyard workers and gardeners in mind. Although a carpenter by trade, Jesus understood His audience. Think about the parables of the vineyard workers, the seed planted in good soil, the weeds that grew into the wheat, or the barren fig tree. As someone who works closely with the land, I am especially touched when one of the more earthy parables comes up in the church calendar. I understand about broadcasting seed, and so did ancient peoples whose work determined whether they would eat or not.
Today, in my garden, I saw so much change. In spring, everything looked so fresh, and even two weeks ago, the garden was at its most beautiful. We are now at high summer, and all of the plants show the wear and tear of working to produce whatever fruit they are to bear, whether it be flowers, tomatoes, or seeds.
The beautiful poem of Ecclesiastes 3:1-8 (King James Version) came to mind:
To everything there is a season, and
a time to every purpose under heaven:
A time to be born, and
a time to die;
a time to plant, and
a time to pluck up
that which is planted;
A time to kill, and
a time to heal;
a time to break down, and
a time to build up;
A time to weep, and
a time to laugh;
a time to mourn, and
a time to dance;
A time to cast away stones, and
a time to gather stones together;
a time to embrace, and
a time to refrain from embracing;
A time to get, and
a time to lose;
a time to keep, and
a time to cast away;
A time to rend, and
a time to sow;
a time to keep silence, and
a time to speak;
A time to love, and
a time to hate;
a time of war; and
a time of peace.
I can’t read these words without also thinking of the song Turn, Turn, Turn by The Byrds. I still love it after all these years.
Lovely post. Ecclesiastes 3:1-8 has always been meaningful to me as it was read at my mom’s funeral when I was just 11 years old. I also loved The Byrds’ Turn, Turn, Turn and have several versions of it on my IPod. Thanks for a wonderful post, and your photos are also great.
Martha/All the Dirt on Gardening says
Ah, yes, we gardeners are nostalgic as the June flowers fade and the leaves crisp on plants that can’t take the impending August heat and drought.
No amount of water will make the earth cool enough to perk them up.
The life-cycle of a garden holds so many poignant lessons.
Martha, thank goodness September and cooler temps will be right around the corner.~~Dee
Lisa at Greenbow says
A thought provoking post Dee.
Thank you, Lisa.~~Dee
Brenda Kula says
I was just out this morning clipping away brown scorched looking leaves off shasta daisies, and lamenting the beauty they held just a month ago. Oh, but that’s the way it goes. If it stayed all year long, it would lose it’s sense of beauty!
Yes, Brenda, it’s that time of year, isn’t it.~~Dee
What a spiritual piece, Dee. I enjoyed it throughly, and probably got more out of it than most of the sermons I have sat through. Thanks!
Hi Sandy, we just relate to the garden sermons. 🙂 ~~Dee
Oh, honey, your blog today is water for my thirsty soul! I’m getting back to my ‘normal’ life, and realizing how precious it is. Surely, to everything there is a season. A season to return home. I have those same beautiful blue flowering plants– salvia? I’ve forgotten, but they gave me delight when I came home and saw them blooming anew.
CA, hugs to you, girl. Yes, it’s ‘Blue and Black’ salvia.~~Dee
BlackswampGirl Kim says
I’m glad that you mentioned the Byrds song, as I was hearing it in my head as I read your post! 🙂 Gorgeous pictures of the garden… I particularly am enjoying that blue salvia, as it doesn’t quite show the “wear and tear” you mention. (yet!)
Kim, it’s a survivor.~~Dee
Lovely post, Dee, and gorgeous pics of your garden!
Thank you, Genie.~~Dee
Lucy Corrander says
Thanks for allowing me to put a copy of the Cedar in the Deserted Garden on LOOSE AND LEAFY
May I offer you a small nosegay of blue flowers as an ‘Esther Montgomery ‘Prize’ for a Particularly Memorable Picture’?
Thanks, Lucy, as soon as I figure out how to put them in my sidebar, I will.~~Dee
Thank you for sharing your observance of the Lord’s day in such a beautiful post. Is that last flower a salvia? It is such a fine shade of electric blue.
Hi Teresa, I’m glad you liked it. It is a salvia, ‘Blue and Black.’ It grows to five or six feet and looks great in summer.~~Dee
thanks for an uplifting thought for the day. I need to be reminded about seasons. Time keeps flying by faster and faster for me, and I keep wishing spring would last longer, etc etc. thanks for your visits and comments on my blog. enjoyed your compost entry, too!
Time keeps passing by for me too, Muum. I love your blog.~~Dee
Very nice post in every way. Thanks
Thank you, Deb.~~Dee
That’s beautiful Dee~ Thanks.
Thank you, Chey, for coming by and for commenting.~~Dee
Linda at Meadowview Thymes says
Yes, the words in Ecclesiastes are favorites. I go to those words with each season change, or really any change in life I am going through. Thanks for sharing, and helping me remember!
Linda, thank you for coming by and reading my blog.~~Dee
A very heartfelt and appreciative post to know what it really means to reap after toiling in the dirt. I loved reading it and thank you for another very well done post.
Anna, thank you Darlin’.~~Dee
The joys of a common lectionary. The crop seeds and the weed seeds featured in our service, and the sermon, today.
And so much of my writing is born from the brainstorming that happens while working my gardens!
So true. Your posts have been very thoughtful as you memorialized your friend.~~Dee
Crafty Gardener says
Lovely photos of your garden. Thanks for visiting The Gardener Side
Thank you and you’re welcome.~~Dee
What a beautiful Sunday stroll post. Your photos are pretty, but even more, your text is particularly reflective and calming today. I love those Bible passages as well.
Your Rudbeckia is so lovely. What are the little blue flowers? I don’t recognize those.
So glad you strolled! 🙂
Hi Aisling, those are the flowers of Salvia guaranitica ‘Black and Blue’. It grows very tall, about five to six feet. When I purchased it from the butterfly lady, she also called it African sage.~~Dee
I love that passage in Ecclesiastes. I often think that we gardeners are somehow driven to recover a bit of the Eden that was lost with the fall. Wouldn’t it be amazing to be able to see what the very first garden looked like? I know it would be far better than any of our attempts!
Amy, what a beautiful thought.~~Dee
I ponder when I drive. Soon I won’t be able to afford thinking
I embrace the wildflowers. If I called them weeds I’d be admitting I neglect my gardening duties.
…and now I can’t get ‘Turn, Turn, Turn’ out of my head.
I’m leaving this post for the Byrds 🙂
Oops, Wiseacre, sorry about that.~~Dee
Dee, that’s been one of my favorite biblical quotations since childhood, and the Byrds’ song one of my all-time favorites.
Hi Linda, me too.~~Dee
Thank you for stopping by and commenting on my Writing Nook about the Canadian soldier. I followed your link here and what a beautiful spot on the web. Your post today is fantastic. Thank you for sharing.
Blessings for a great week.
Thank you, Mary. Your post touched my heart.~~Dee
Mr. McGregor's Daughter says
Synchronicity at work again! Last night in church, the Gospel reading was the parable of the weeds growing in the wheat. For the homily, the deacon had a vase of flowers. He talked about how we want to have a perfect garden at work, but there’s the boss who doesn’t appreciate our efforts, or the customers who make unreasonable demands. Dig those weeds out! he said as he pulled a flower out of the vase. Then he gave examples of problem people at church or in school, tossing flowers out as he spoke. Soon, he had an empty vase. His point, we need to stop treating difficult people or those we don’t like as weeds. Lovely post for a Sunday morning.
MMD, I love that you told what your deacon said. What a beautiful analogy to remember. Our priest spoke of how the church can be made up of only saints, or it can be composed of sinners trying to live out God’s teachings. He said Jesus chose the latter and shouldn’t we be like Jesus?~~Dee
Robin Wedewer says
A most appropriate post for a beautiful Sunday morning. A walk in the garden is always a wonder.
Of course, some wonders are better than others. (I wonder how that weed got there? I wonder what to do with all those daylilies?)
Thank, Robin. I wonder that same things about weeds & daylilies, except I wonder “Why did that daylily die?”~~Dee
Carol, May Dreams Gardens says
A lovely and thoughtful post on a beautiful Sunday morning. I think I listen more closely in church when the ‘gardening’ readings come up, like last week the seed sowing, and this weekend, the weeds. We should indeed ’embrace’ those mundane tasks because they do give us time to think.
Hi Carol, thank you. We had one of those readings this morning, didn’t we?~~Dee