lundi, juillet 02, 2007

Are men like plants?

I have developed the bad habit of forgetting to put on my gardening gloves when I go out to pick the beans or to survey, with wonder, the yellow squash that now threaten to take over my vegetable garden.

Inevitably I see a weed that must be pulled...and where there is one, there are 100, flaunting their skinny green bodies with the deep roots. Though I know I will never win this fight, I have succeeded in keeping the foreigners from choking my beans and carrots and whatever it is that I planted by the sides of the garden.

My only problem with the enigmatic visitors in the eastern and western walls? Figuring out when they are ripe and ready to be eaten.

Tonight I spent hours outside, mowing the lawn (another task never done) and turning up the dirt in my side garden. The former owners put down a weed barrier, which does nothing, in my opinion, but keep the perennials from rooting deeply.

As I pulled up yet more weeds in the front, night fell and the garden lights glowed in the back, yellow, green and pink.

For some reason, as I pulled weeds and replanted some of the annuals in other beds, I reflected with bemusement on the connection between gardening and my male pals.

I had written two of them and gently suggested that distance made a romantic relationship impossible. OK, they said, but can we keep writing you? Counselor, interrogator or simply friend, I seem to serve some purpose in their lives at the moment. As if to compensate for their temperance and general good citizenship, another, mostly in the spirit of mischevious fun, keeps trying to lure me into his arms. I'm not bored, for sure.

In these relationships, as in the ones I don't name here, willingness to weed, to fertilize with humor, and the skillful manipulation of good pruning shears to promote growth are all neccesary ingredients for healthy plants. When one blooms, whether the flowers are reliable everyday begonias or exotic orchids, it is wonderful. But the next day, the weeding, and fertilizing and pruning start-all over again.

Maybe tomorrow I will remember to put on gloves.

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