This swing often acts as the resting place of my chapel. I sit here a lot, sometimes when I am tired of working in the “yard.” Here, I think, no I wonder and I ponder, and I contemplate and even sometimes, I meditate, but mostly I pet the dogs.
Sometimes when I am petting the dogs, a calmness comes over me and the dogs. It is as if we are sharing the same moment with the same feeling. Dog nature and human nature intersect until one of us gets distracted and we retreat back into our natures.
Often birds will fly around me and above me and I get that same feeling of a shared nature. I can just sit there on the swing and watch this incredible sight of flight.
A couple of months ago, a dove sat on a post nearby and we spent a considerable amount of time with each other. At first it seemed odd, but soon it felt very “natural.” Another intersection of different natures, I suppose.
I have even experienced this intersection with trees. There is a very old walnut tree up the road and when you are under its huge limbs, it feels like loving arms of wisdom surround you.
The colors of autumn are a doorway to this experience of oneness for me too. Today , the poplars (cottonwoods) out front are so beautiful. In the foreground, the citrus is ripening on the tree and in between, the little cherry trees will soon be losing their leaves, but will blossom again after the citrus ripens. The poplars are saying “Look at my last beautiful hoorah, soon it will be your turn as I sleep but I will awaken again to the sight of the cherry blossoms and the fragrance of the last oranges.” Somehow, I, we, are all apart of this miracle.
We’ve been cleaning up the place from all the summer gardening. By the back orchard, where we planted many flowers of all varieties, the flowers are brown and bent over. I went out to start taking out dead plants, but at least a hundred little birds flew out from them as they are feeding on all the seeds still available there. Again, an intersection of natures. The flowers brought me great joy this year, especially as I watched the ladies in the family walk through and pick bouquets. I am telling you, it would almost bring tears to my eyes. Now, seeing the birds thriving in that little garden, makes me breathe slower and deeper. These shared moments often leads to my most common prayer being said beneath my breath, “Thank you, Creator.”
In someways, that is really what gardening is all about, at any level, or any amount, this intersection of natures -all happening naturally.