Friday, July 30, 2010

Peripheral Vision

When Hercule Poirot solves a difficult case it is because he sees more than meets the eye. When the Radiologist in training, 101, focuses on the center of the radiograph, looking at the item for which the image was taken, and neglects to look at the edges of the film for other things, stuff gets overlooked. The great painters spend much time on the edges of the painting, not just the treatment they give at the golden mean. There is a lesson here for the gardeners who would be true to their craft. It is not just what is seen that is important, but that which is not seen. That which must be looked for! The boundaries of your plot that you have applied with brush strokes over the years has intimate details and secrets that only you know about. You probably value the unseen, the secret and the inobvious as much as the familiar. If you neglect your boundaries for the seen only, you will not have a private place that you can choose to share, or not share, with someone who loves a garden as much as you do. Intimacy means sharing secrets as well as triumphs or disasters. They come in ample supply in the garden for all of us. Humility is a chastening thing, but leads to knowledge. I never learned much by my successes, but plenty with the failures. As Hannah quoted Leonard, who paraphrased the Scripture, "There is a crack in everything. That's how the light gets in". Give yourself a still, small, dark place in the garden that is not for display, but only for those who have eyes that can see.

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