All My Life’s a Circle

Autumn in the gardens…last night we saw our first frost.  The birds are busy at the feeder, trying to fatten up for the winter ahead.  The leaves of every plant are now curled into themselves and slumping downward.  The earth awaits a long sleep.

I look at my children and feel so aware of time moving at warp speed.  They are so beautiful.  I’ve been thinking about them so much today.

All My Life's a Circle
Harry Chapin

(Starts with 2 stanza chorus):

All my life's a circle;
Sunrise and sundown;
Moon rolls thru the nighttime;
Till the daybreak comes around.

All my life's a circle;
But I can't tell you why;
Season's spinning round again;
The years keep rollin' by.

It seems like I've been here before;
I can't remember when;
But I have this funny feeling;
That we'll all be together again.
No straight lines make up my life;
And all my roads have bends;
There's no clear-cut beginnings;
And so far no dead-ends.


I found you a thousand times;
I guess you done the same;
But then we lose each other;
It's like a children's game;

As I find you here again;
A thought runs through my mind;
Our love is like a circle;
Let's go 'round one more time.

This Morning in the Garden

The foliage has been losing its freshness through the month of August, and here and there a yellow leaf shows itself like the first gray hair amidst the locks of a beauty who has seen one season too many.  ~Oliver Wendell Holmes

Autumn is a second spring when every leaf is a flower.  ~Albert Camus

Delicious autumn!  My very soul is wedded to it, and if I were a bird I would fly about the earth seeking the successive autumns.  ~George Eliot

Winter is an etching, spring a watercolor, summer an oil painting and autumn a mosaic of them all.  ~Stanley Horowitz

For man, autumn is a time of harvest, of gathering together.  For nature, it is a time of sowing, of scattering abroad.  ~Edwin Way Teale

No spring nor summer beauty hath such grace
As I have seen in one autumnal face.
~John Donne

This Week In the Garden: First Week of September

Yes, Dad, I DID let the lettuce go to seed!  There is ONLY SO MUCH lettuce that one lady can eat!  It was nice just to relax after Max’s off leash romp in the wind and the rain this afternoon.  I really have enjoyed the peacefulness of my back yard this summer!  The video represents only a segment of the zillion sparrows hanging out in the yard…the others were all sitting in May (the Mayday tree) above my head and behind my back…cautious of the sounds I was making with the camera.

This bee, among others, was clinging to one of the sunflowers…gathering up the last pollens of the season.

Student Painting

Morning on the Circle

The sun rises to the east and lights up the garden.

The Sunflowers by Ethelwyn Wetherald
When lamps are out and voices fled,
And moonlight floods the earth like rain,
I steal outside and cross the lane
And stand beside the sunflower bed;
Each blind, unopened face is turned
To where the western glories burned,
As though the sun might come again,
With some last word he left unsaid.When Dawn with slender shining hand
Inscribes a message on the wall,
  I follow at the silent call
To where my tall sun-lovers stand.
Their wistful heads are lifted high
Toward the flaming eastern sky,
As though some voice had turned them all,
Some secret voice of strong command.Ah, should I from the windowed height
Keep vigil in the room above,
And see them lightly, surely move
Through the chill stretches of the night,
Would not the heart within me burn,
As loyally I watched them turn,
With sweet undoubting faith and love
From vanished light to dawning light?I try to leave out the parts that people skip. Elmore Leonard

This Week In the Garden

The final bloomers show their petals…and I begin to harvest tomatoes…a few each day.  It has been a most beautiful summer in the garden and I have really enjoyed the time spent outdoors, watching things grow.  White lilies and a final poppy showed themselves this morning.

A Late Walk

When I go up through the mowing field,
The headless aftermath,
Smooth-laid like thatch with the heavy dew,
Half closes the garden path.

And when I come to the garden ground,
The whir of sober birds
Up from the tangle of withered weeds
Is sadder than any words

A tree beside the wall stands bare,
But a leaf that lingered brown,
Disturbed, I doubt not, by my thought,
Comes softly rattling down.

I end not far from my going forth
By picking the faded blue
Of the last remaining aster flower
To carry again to you.

Robert Frost

A Few Minutes in the Garden: Mary’s Lilies Bloom

I have been spending time on two missions in the garden recently…trying to disband a wasps’ nest that is tucked in between my Cremona flat stone and the tomato planter and trying to identify what sort of creature is digging holes exuberantly at my veggie garden boxes.

There is such evidence that the evening temperatures are cooler and autumn is around the corner.  The catoni asters have some red leaves in places.  The columbine have their second growth.  The mayday tree is providing the birds with plenty of berries to supplement their diet at the feeder.

Mary appeared at my house on my birthday a few years ago and gave me the gift of some beautiful lilies.  Their blooms are spectacular and I always consider them a remarkable way to end things in the gardens.  The sunflowers are now seven feet tall.  I wonder lately, if they will ever bloom.  I feel a little like ‘Jack’, if you know what I mean.  There are some rust spots on the leaves, but otherwise the tomato plants are producing generous amounts of fruit.  I have enjoyed being home this summer, watching things change.  I enjoy my back yard so much.

In fact, I am going to head out there shortly and dependent on the cloud cover, I might have the chance to witness the Perseid Meteor shower that will come to its climax tonight and in the wee hours of the morning.  Unfortunately, I do believe that our weather is going to be uncooperative.  I encourage my readers to go and take a look, wherever you may be.

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Fifteen Minutes Spent in the Garden

The heat is exceptional today…but regardless, there is already a sense in the garden, that summer is fading.  Mary’s Lilies have yet to bloom and they will be gorgeous and the sunflowers are the height of George Duncan’s outdoor art by now, but apart from that, all else has bloomed.  Calgary’s growing season is so short…it’s as though everything comes to life suddenly and then passes.  I’m grateful for the beautiful walk along the river with Max today.  I’m grateful for the opportunity to take pause and relax in the shade of the Mayday tree.

Sharing a Garden Walk With Mom and Dad

My parents have everything to do with my love for gardening. While I’ve only ever had a very small back yard, I make an effort to create beauty there every summer, in part because of the passion that my Mom and Dad inspired.  They are so far away that it is impossible to share the changing colour and new blooms, the fruits of my labour.   In fact it was via skype that my father informed me that I need to transplant those little strawberry trailers back into the garden.  I’ll do that today!  I love you, Mom and Dad.  Enjoy the walk with me this morning through my little garden.