The Dead Stuff Must Go

A Kansas Country Garden

March 2015

Suddenly it seems that spring has arrived. We are never 100% sure that it is really here to stay, but as days go by with delightfully warm temperatures, it certainly seems like a possibility.


After months of winter banishment from the garden, the heart and the hands yearn to return. First order of business is cleaning up the flower beds. Last year's garden was one of the best; generous rains brought a truly outstanding display that was all the more treasured because it followed several years of drought and intense heat. 


You wouldn't know that by looking at the garden now. Dried stalks with seed heads stand stiffly among golden grasses and heaps of crisp brown leaves weary and worn from winter's assault . It is time. The dead stuff must go.

It is not unpleasant work, this clipping and snipping, this gathering and stuffing into the garden cart and dumping onto the compost or burn pile. The sun is warm and welcoming. The light breeze is refreshing. There is no hurry; this will take a few days.

Under the debris are glimpses of  green peeking through the earth. The garden to come must be freed from the garden that was. That's why the dead stuff must go. This thought makes me pause and suddenly I know this is a truth that encompasses far more than just my garden. The nudge in my soul tells me that it is not only my garden that needs to be relieved of remnants of what once was and is no more. 



And so an a few afternoons are well spent with a little physical work and a little soul work. In the end, the dead stuff is mostly gone. In its place, there is hope. 

“Remember not the former things,
    nor consider the things of old.
 Behold, I am doing a new thing;
    now it springs forth, do you not perceive it?
I will make a way in the wilderness
    and rivers in the desert." 

Isaiah 43: 18-19
Brownie and Martha, our resident guinea fowl patrol the lawn and provide me with a bit of amusement while working. 
There is goes! Dead stuff be gone!







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