Making multiple mental wish lists hasn't been hard. But, during the past month-and-a-half, devoting time, energy and focus to writing has been. And so today, I find myself weeks behind in responding to Gayla's second writing prompt (and the third, fourth and fifth prompts, too).
But I have made some progress since I first read Gayla's prompt in early April:
"Describe your fantasy garden."
"This exercise has nothing to do with how much money you have, where you live now, or real life. It's pure fantasy. This is the garden you would make if you could do ANYTHING."
Every time I've worked on drafts, the same ideas have come to mind -- with a few additions based on what I've seen or read in between writing sessions.
So this morning I'm going to say the germination period is now complete. Time now for the seedlings (and yes, many of the ideas are not fully developed so I shall use the garden analogy) to published.
There is also and underlying theme or guiding philosophy to my dream garden that is based on William Morris' classic quotation:
"Have nothing in your home that you do not know to be useful, or believe to be beautiful."
The elements of my dream garden must be useful, beautiful and nurture nature. If they fulfill these criteria, they will also nuture the gardener.
I'm w-a-a-a-y behind in responding to Gayla's writing prompts. Well, that's not quite true. While tending to the plants on my balcony and in my community plots and also while taking Piper for evening walks, I've been planning my fantasy garden and "mind-writing" this post. And now, while I'm on the second (and sadly, final) week of a stay-close-to-home, garden-focused vacation, I've decided it's time to refine and publish my wish list. It's a mix of the practical and the beautiful. It nurtures nature as well as nourishes the gardener.
To paraphrase William Morris, "Have nothing in your garden that you do not know to be useful, or believe to be beautiful."
Last month I started two different drafts in response to prompt #2, And so if there were no limits on what I could do, have or make in my dream garden, I would included all these elements and qualities:
big enough to keep me blissfully occupied tending and planning and enjoying
but not so large as to overwhelm
enough sun and warmth for eggplants
sufficent shade and cool for moss & lilies of the valley and violas
moss lined banks
rainbarrel, compost bin, greenhouse in an efficient configuration like the u-shaped kitchen work area of stove, fridge and sink
Japanese maples for meditation
Colour, fragrance, flavour, bird-songs and breezes,
continuous with the kitchen
a view of the mountains
decreasing order and formality as we move from the kitchen garden through the native garden to the spaces beyond. The distant vista: mountains.
Dream gardening: warm sunshine, cool breeze, blue sky, wisps of clouds, birds and bees and butterflies, blossoms and greenery
Starts with seed and soil, sun and rain.
When I dream, I don't dream about the plants, though they surround me. I dream about the feeling of being lost in the digging and tamping, weeding and pruning, staking and tying.
Absolute criteria: organic in true sense of the term,
to garden in the fullest parts of the day
instead of the corners and pockets
to look up and view distant mountains in all directions
the same plants, the same functional areas but in a greater space
But now when I re-read my lists and sentence fragments (that's how I think, which makes writing posts so difficult) I realize I was far too practical. Yes, I want the compost container, greenhouse, cold frame but Gayla gave me permission to let go: