Tuesday, 19 May 2009


The kiss of the sun for pardon,
The song of the birds for mirth
One is nearer God's heart in a garden
Than anywhere else on earth.
Dorothy Frances Gurney

Working in the garden under the darkening canopy of the traditional Irish summer requires some peculiar athletic skills, as in ducking in and out between the showers ! I am now on one one of several rain breaks as I fitfully attempt to bag leaves and weeds from the ‘small’ front garden, the pungent smell of crushed bay leaves still lingering in my nostrils.
My lettuce update !
After a winter of neglect ( my shame, I know), I am now trying to whip the flower garden into some fit state for blooming during the summer months. According to the experts, gardening is an all year enterprise a fact that has never sunk in sufficiently for me to actually heed it and turn it into a twelve monthly programme of horticultural endeavour. So here I stand at the end of May rake in hand, frantically trying to cheat my way into a presentable garden space to luxuriate in over June, July and August


.Seed Potatoes awaiting their burial !


My bountiful lettuce crop at the other side of the house is a daily encouragement to persist in the ongoing struggle with the soil. More than once I have reflected on those ominous words from Genesis where God pronounces the consequences of Adam and Eve’s disobedience : “ Cursed is the ground because of you; through painful toil you will eat of it all the days of your life. It will produce thorns and thistles for you, and you will eat the plants of the field. By the sweat of your brow you will eat your food until you return to the ground, since from it you were taken, for dust you are and to dust you will return.” (Genesis 3 17-19)
Ah the sun breaks through and I must fly…hi ho…hi ho…

Gerard O'Shea

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