The sun shines enticingly, beguiling me to bundle up and see what surprises await me in the garden. When I open the door, the blast of cold takes my breath away and I almost, almost retreat back inside, but no, it is the end of February, and I know that beneath the crusty frozen top soil, the garden is waking from her slumber. I shiver and step out, admiring the cardinal that chirps at the bird feeder, thanking me for the black sunflower seeds he finds. The wild onions woke up last week during the teaser of warmth, but they shiver outside as well this morning. I survey the bed around the old box elder tree that has guarded my driveway the past half century, looking for traces of crocus. I see nothing.
My coffee mugs steams, tickling my nose as hot liquid warms my mouth. I crunch across the lawn towards the front flower bed, peering closely for any sign of life. A dandelion crouches in the grass, tow headed and sad. I can’t help but admire her courage. I see the green of familiar weeds seeking to stake their claim, mocking me, daring me to extend a hand, knowing that the frozen ground guards their roots.
But I see nothing else.
No other sign of life.
No tulips extending ballet slippered toes into the frigid air, no daffodils testing the temperature, no spring bulbs at all daring to challenge the bitter cold. But I know, and you know, and they know that warm weather will be here, soon. This is that thing called faith; that knowing in your heart that life is not always as it seems on the surface, that given time, even winter wanes, bowing to the beauty of spring.
Just not quite yet.
I went to the seed sharing potluck at the Civic Garden Center last night, breaking bread with about sixty other faithful followers of fertility. They believe. The thousands of packets of dormant dust that changed hands bears testament to the truth we all know will come to pass. Life reinvents itself each year, each season, each day.
If you want to become a part of the community that isn’t afraid to get our hands dirty, that welcomes the trickle of sweat down our backs, whose hearts beat faster with the silent emergence of each miracle from the soil, join us. We meet on the second and fourth Thursday of each month at 5:00pm at the WHRF office at 2505 May Street. We’ll find you a little plot of earth, hand you a hoe and packet of seeds, and applaud the dance that begins with you.