I dreamt orange, red and yellow poppies were sprouting from my legs.
I used a small hand mower to shave the wild flowers and they regrew.
You are nature, I was told.
In my winter garden, I see the plants resting as I breathe the mistiness of the frosty dew. I feel the wet moss underfoot. I feel the icy ground water seep into my aching soul as I tap into a dormant leaf of my crimson heart; we share the same veins.
I see myself as a garden transforming through the seasons.
The colors are muted shades of raw honey, weather-worn as a piece of driftwood and somehow itching to be reborn.
My garden has stories, like we all do. I remember who gave me what plant or which ones were rescued from the half-price bin. I take home the neglected plants and tend to them like they are an extension of me.
The bedraggled, brownish and limp-leaf ones are often the strongest and most radiant, given some love.
A lot like people.
Give them time and they will bloom.
I can get rather melancholy this time of year. It’s a reflective and introspective time, too.
I am looking through the gray and the bleak to find a pocket of love and light.
The other day the tenacious flutter of a hummingbird parted my pensive mood. He seemed to relay a message in his persistent attempts to sip nectar from a faded honeysuckle blossom.
There’s uneasiness in this personal transformation. I don’t particularly enjoy feeling this way.
I’m in limbo.
I am swirling in a layered stream of decay and dust, much like my compost pile. I’m fermenting to create that rich, sweet humus, a spiritual layer to cultivate my roots.
My garden is tired and so am I. I need this long winter to refuel. As the seasons change, pruning and tending will be added to my meditation.
For now, I sip hot ginger tea, laced with honey and lemon, while cocooned in a nest of soft blankets. I’m giving myself permission to rest while I listen to my heart for the sounds of spring.
It’s the sound of love, a big love filled with continuous rebirths, as I meditate through this wintery refuge.
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Assistant Ed: Thandiwe Ogbonna / Ed: Lynn Hasselberger