Saturday, June 1, 2013

Human Agriculture

I went out to the garden this morning in the early hours (and by early, I mean, 9:30 a.m.). I took my hoe and my muscle power and my determination, and I pulled every single weed out of that rectangle of land. I squashed the grubs and shooed away flies and applauded the ladybugs and earthworms, and I caked layers of dirt under my nails that will take days to clean out. I turned over dirt and threw rocks into the rock pile and weeds into the compost pile. Those suckers didn't stand a chance.

I had a grand ol' time.

On what seems like a completely unrelated note (but really isn't, so stick with me), my oldest daughter will attend Kindergarten next year at the public school just up the road from us. She spent the last year at a private Christian school in our area, and we absolutely loved it. The teacher was amazing, and my daughter would come back every day that she went with more things she learned. We would have really loved to keep her in that school, but of course, expense was the major issue.

The last day of preschool, my husband and I attended the preschool award ceremony. The school principal gave a short speech, where he said he was excited to see the ones that would return next year, and the ones that didn't, his prayer was that they would bloom where they were planted.

See? I'm actually going somewhere with this.

Back to the garden. My little plants growing in that patch of dirt are doing remarkably well. The corn looks great, the tomatoes are just getting ready to blossom, the beans look healthy, we just had a lovely lettuce salad last night from the garden, and my cukes are spreading nicely. But I've put a lot of back-breaking work into that tiny little plot of land. I've hoed it and pulled weeds, I've watered it meticulously when the rain has been slow in coming. If I see the pests trying to take control, I make my own natural bug-repellent and declare open warfare on the little creatures. As a result, my plants are loved, nurtured and healthy. The day I stop taking care of my little garden is the day my little plants will get choked out by weeds, dried up in the sun, or eaten up by pests.

My little girl is going to a school in the fall about which I've admittedly been nervous. But her soil has been tenderly raked. Undesirable characteristics have been carefully plucked. Detrimental outside influences have been chased away. A daily watering of love and nurture has been poured over her. There is no conceivable reason why she will not bloom where she has been planted, as long as we continue the process of careful human agriculture.

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