Monday, June 04, 2007

The Hopper-Kingsolvers are nearing the end of their year of living on what they grow and can acquire locally. I have been savoring the book page by page, seed by sprout. Now it is winter, in their story, and they are contentedly, comfortably enjoying the work of their harvest. They canned and froze and dried. They collected the wealth of their farm, so they could continue to enjoy the bounty through their true winter, with snow and frozen ground. The work sounded exhausting and all-consuming... maybe I would have been less dutiful, less determined to preserve everything, but now that they can look upon rows of bottled sauces and a freezer full of pesto and grated zucchini, I can see the worth of their effort... their sweat equity is paying.

We cannot garden here. No space, little sunlight, and an overzealous landlord, preoccupied with trimming trees and pulling weeds and sprouts. I did manage to shelter and encourage a few sweet peas and they are in full bloom. I sit beside them and inhale their fragrance every day.

This is my harvest. I cut some and bring them inside, but mostly I have been letting them live in the quiet garden shade.

I love their colors, their subtlety and variety, the essence of spring that exudes from each petal.

I love the way the petals retract and wither, the color enriching, and then the fuzzed, green pods that emerge and mature.

I love that they smell like sweet spice. I love the rich green of their leaves and the way their tendrils twine and extend, ever hopeful of finding something to hold onto.

This is my harvest... these photographs will sustain me, later in Fall, when I am enjoying boisterous pumpkins and bold chrysanthemums in other people's gardens, I will look back and fondly recall the garden in Spring, when I had sweet peas .


kimberly sherrod said...

what gorgeous sweetpeas! I wish I could grow a garden, but I barely make time for mowing and weeding- we have had a drought for so long that everything is dying anyway! Sad- it's either hurricanes or nuthin! Hey- Your doll quiltie and your sweet little apron are just cute as they can be! I am going in the sewing room now- I was going to Blog but I need something to talk about...maybe a chicken apron soon....I don't want to spoil anyone's surprise so it's tough! hahha! Oh, the calamity!

Natalie said...

Okay, I guess I am a lucky girl. I want lots more garden, but sweetpeas are better than nothing. Thank you for the praise. It's so much fun creating the visions that dance in my head; I know you are having fun too. I just love your calamities!

Tarie said...

Pretty sweetpeas. :) There are no sweetpeas in the Philippines... :(

Janece said...

This is such a beautiful wonderful post... made only more wonderful by the gorgeous photos of your sweetpeas.

After reading your posts on Animal, Vegetable, Miracle -- I couldn't resist any more and I went out and picked up a copy. I'm dying to dive in.