The Ground Beneath Her Feet

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At home this weekend, the heat of a city summer burns and burns.  There is no escape from it. Well, perhaps if you choose to descend with the rest of the horde into the great big maw of the mall, then there is some succor.  I’ve never been much enamored by malls, so it’s home for me. A few months back, I suddenly decided I wanted plants to figure in my life, so I hauled off a few pots from the gardening store—mostly flowers and small shrubs—and set about making things grow.

I let the patch of grass cross our little lawn and moved stepping stones aside to make room for more green, less parched earth. Flower pots dangled by the window, a trio of shrubs lined one wall. I re-potted and fertilized, weeded and watered. And what do you know, it is indeed relaxing to putter around and manhandle dirt.  It’s not much of a garden yet, but it’s there.  It’s a start.

Sometimes my boys run on the grass,  wallop the hanging pots, pinch off a leaf or two. But I don’t mind, I let them frolic about like the little wildlings  I imagine them to be. I wish we had more space for them to run around in, more grassy lawn to trample underfoot.

I think at heart, I am a girl who loves green. Not for me the claustrophobia of concrete and asphalt, the hard, brittle quality of things man-made.  Constantly, I miss seeing lush, broccoli-shaped trees spread out against a blue sky, unfettered by wires. I like to see vast tracts of land rolling out into the horizon, with no building in sight.  One could miss experiencing these things:  clouds kissing grass, the sound of water flowing, the texture and smell of wet soil.

Going into the place where my office building is located, I pass by a very short avenue lined by trees, and this is the only part of my commute that I enjoy, secretly, and all too brief.  I keep my enjoyment of trees to myself. Folks here seem to frown upon a liking for trees, and greenery, and nature.  I’ve heard some say the office location is a drawback, that it is so secluded, so far from civilization.

As though the mass of steel, glass, and grayness just a few minutes away is less of a jungle, and more of home.


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