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Sunday, 11 August 2013

the way of the wild





True gardening weaves the way of the wild within it, the will of Nature and the will of the human.
I don't know who said that but thank goodness for it. I can happily say this is what has occurred in our garden.





I've left a strip of wild grass running at right angles to the bench, like a red carpet laid out to the back door only this is green. It's a haven for wildlife and the ducks, that you can just see peering out by the bushes, like to hide in it and then pounce out at you as you walk past and peck the backs of your legs.

It's fun mowing strips into the lawn. I started off leaving four squares of grass which looked good too but for the last couple of years I've just left the carpet. Of course if you have a small lawn and children you can only do this when they've grown up and don't want to play swingball on it or miniature golf or something complicated with a Barbie doll.
possibly the last of the sweet peas.
The mornings are turning out to be pretty predictable at the moment. Firstly there'll be a pair of rabbit's ears left on the landing - sometimes still attached to the rabbit - but often not. Then there'll be the early morning dog walk which. because all the deer are hiding in the barley very near to home, means you walk for about two minutes, then the dogs run off after the deer for ten or fifteen minutes, come back exhausted and then we turn round and go home. This kind of behaviour has repeated itself every day for the past five or six days. Still I see the combine is out so they'll be cutting it soon and there'll be nowhere for those deer to hide so they'll have to nip back into the woods and we can continue our walk.
 The roses that I've remembered to dead head are doing  a second flush now which is great. I'm impressed with their bravery blossoming amongst stems of blackspot which gets progressively worse as the summer goes by.
Well no blackspot on these.
Both my girls are away at the moment, one in Thailand and one at a festival called Wilderness but here's a picture of Pixie being so happy to see one of them on her return from somewhere else. I think I've already mentioned she thinks she's a lap dog.
 The phlox are on show now, most of the ones in my garden are a not very nice shade of pink.I keep pulling them out but each year there they are again, bigger and more pink than ever. Like those pink geraniums that insist on popping up everywhere, they seem to be the dominant colour in survival. This is a lovely pale mauve called Franz Schubert that is here in a garden I did for someone else. Note to self. Must put them in mine.



It's going to be beach walking weather soon. On most beaches near us you have to wait till later in the year before you can allow dogs on them. Not a bad thing I guess, you don't want sand kicked into your cornet as the dog races past trailing a rope of seaweed or showering you with salt water when they come out after a dip. When we first took Pixie to the beach she was really frightened of a sand castle she found and of course the waves lapping up on the sand were more scary than being attacked by a giant cat. Beezle would be contented with the odd shell  but Pixie was more disappointed with the sea's detritus than him and I saw her staring at a crab shell as if it were a bad throw of the dice.

A Green Crab's Shell
  by Mark Doty


Not, exactly, green:
closer to bronze
preserved in kind brine,

something retrieved
from a Greco-Roman wreck,
patinated and oddly

muscular. We cannot
know what his fantastic
legs were like--

though evidence
suggests eight
complexly folded

scuttling works
of armament, crowned
by the foreclaws'

gesture of menace
and power. A gull's
gobbled the center,

leaving this chamber
--size of a demitasse--
open to reveal

a shocking, Giotto blue.
Though it smells
of seaweed and ruin,

this little traveling case
comes with such lavish lining!
Imagine breathing

surrounded by
the brilliant rinse
of summer's firmament.

What color is
the underside of skin?
Not so bad, to die,

if we could be opened
into this--
if the smallest chambers

of ourselves,
similarly,
revealed some sky.


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