the cosmos in miniature...

The garden is a domestication of the wild, taking what can be random, and, to a degree, ordering it so that it is not merely a transference from the wild, but still retains the elements that make each plant shine in its natural habitat.


I think of gardening as an extension of one’s own being, something as deeply personal and intimate as writing a poem. The difference is that the garden is alive and it is created to endure just the way a human being comes into the world and lives, suffers, enjoys, and is mortal. The lifespan of a flowering plant can be so short, so abbreviated by the changing of the seasons, it seems to be a compressed parable of the human experience.


You might say, as well that the garden is a metaphor for the poems you write in a lifetime and give to the world in the hope that these poems you have lived through will be equivalent to the flower that takes root in the soil and becomes part of the landscape. If you’re lucky, that happens with some of the poems you create, while others pass the way of so many plants you set into the garden, or grow from seed: they emerge and give pleasure for a season and then vanish.

      – from The Wild Braid, Stanley Kunitz


poet with a day job said...

I love this - as a poet, and a farmer.

Thanks for posting!

Anonymous said...

need this today as i gather seeds for next year's crop. and as i gaze upon the trout. perfect personal po post!

C. E. Chaffin said...

I'm an avid though less than expert gardener, but philosophically I have discovered that a garden is defined by its weeds. What you label a weed defines your garden by exclusion. One man's weed is another man's flower.

barbara jane said...

Sam, as an urban horticulturalist in the process of becoming, I really find this quote relevant. Awesome.

sam of the ten thousand things said...

I appreciate the read and the response - Melissa, Nicole, CE, and Barbara Jane.