by Chris Kamalski
A clip from my latest (last?) post on our Pangani community blog:
HARROWING [by Parker Palmer]
‘The plow has savaged this sweet field
Misshapen clods of earth kicked up
Rocks and twisted roots exposed to view
Last year’s growth demolished by the blade.
I have plowed my life this way
Turned over a whole history
Looking for the roots of what went wrong
Until my face is ravaged, furrowed, scarred.
Enough. The job is done.
Whatever’s been uprooted, let it be
Seedbed for the growing that’s to come.
I plowed to unearth last year’s reasons–
The farmer plants to plant a greening season.”
So much has changed in the past 9 months of growth. I am uprooted in ways beyond my intellectual, emotional, even guttural ability to understand. I am becoming a different sort of person: richer, fuller, clarified. Paradoxically however, the seeds of this growth have happened through confusion, isolation as I am confronted with my cultural perspectives, and a gentle uncovering of my hypocrisy as I live within the mirror that is intentional community.
That’s the thing about digging in the garden with a shovel or a rototiller – it looks like you have messed up the soil or even ruined it, when what you have done is prepare it for new seeds that will have better soil to come up in. When you dig in the old plants and old compost into the bed for the next season, you are enriching the soil without having to add anything fake or chemical – thus positively ensuring a richer and better environment for the next seeds.
THERE IS NOTHING LIKE A GOOD GARDENING METAPHOR/ANALOGY!
Mom, you would love this book.