Monday, July 14, 2008
The Sensual Garden
As a synesthesic, this is the time of year I dream about most on those gray, dark and snow-bound January days. I dream about strolling through the garden, checking to see what new flowers have bloomed or if we have beans to pick or watch for butterflies. I clean and fill the birdbaths and refill the feeders. I get out the reel mower, do some weeding, or not. The scents though, more than the beauty of everything is what I try to remember but never get quite right in the deep of winter. I stroke mint, rosemary and lavender to impart their scents and colors on my fingers. I brush by the scarlet bee balm and at once I can smell their rich Earl Grey scent, with Greek pizza undertones. It's humid and warm and the filmy scent of daylilies and stargazers drifts in through the kitchen window, coating my skin. The kids run by on the path and crush the mint growing between the stones, leaving bright sparks of blue behind them. The roses...oh the roses. Their scent travels on a briny but fresh sea breeze and there is nothing else like it, but it's feels like soft driftwood. The tansy by our front door, with it's feathery leaves and yellow buttons gives off an acrid and green scent that reminds me of wormwood and blueberry barrens. We pick rasberries at a local farm and though I haven't convinced the rest of my family yet, I swear they taste like little rose morsels. (Raspberries and roses are in the same family, so this actually has botony to back it up.) At any rate, they taste red and creamy pink with bright spots of yellow. The garden is sensual, enveloping and calms and invigorates me at once. This--this is what I miss mid-winter. And so it is summer, and I go out, I soak up, hoping to store up, like a plant photosynthesizing, so that these scents and blooms of color feed my soul when it needs fuel.