My dear friend was just telling me about her garden. With childlike glee she expressed her joy over planting all sorts of veggies and delightful herbs.

I see colorful pictures and posts from friends tending to their flower beds and tomato plants, great delight in it all. Gardening, a wonderfully rewarding and cathartic hobby. I have houseplants that I forget to water, so I watch in awe as my gifted friends sow seeds, till grounds, and create environments suitable for good and sustainable growth.

Gardening is all about the soil. Is the soil dry, drowned, barren, fertile? Is the soil ready to be tilled or does it need to be left alone, tended to another season? Is the soil prepared for the seed? This type of labor involves keen awareness for the state the soil is in.

We are both the gardeners and the gardens.

Each of us, our own intricately developed type of soil. We are shaped by so many similar experiences, but our lives are such uniquely painted murals — blended with light and shadows, each one different from the next. How fascinating a wild bunch of beings are we. Graced with a kaleidoscopic range of gifts, talents, and callings, the world is lit up by our endless combinations of color, fragrance, and vegetation.

Humans have such an undeniable need for fellowship. We long to be seen, understood, and heard. We long to contribute and leave something of ourselves for others to glean from long after we are gone. We are fulfilled in both the giving and in the receiving.

As gardeners, we oversee precious seeds unique to the sovereign journey we find ourselves on. A good gardener is constantly serving the needs of the plant to which he tends, overseeing its growth with constant care and protection.

Water is a necessity, but good soil can be adversely affected by too much all at once — that’s where understanding the soil comes in.

Words are like water. Sometimes they are a babbling brook, gleeful spurts of enthusiastic affection. Sometimes a steady stream, moving slowly and effortlessly over everything it touches.

Sometimes they are a flood, a sudden great release.

Water only needs a small crack through which to travel, to make its way to the soil that thirsts even unknowingly. We are the oceans and the streams, the overwhelming waters of deep and the gentle moving currents. We connect regardless of dams, debris, drought, and mighty boulders. We are forces to be reckoned with, great and small.

Water, water the flowers.

“If words are seeds, let flowers grow from your mouth, not weeds.

If hearts are gardens, plant those flowers in the chest of the ones who exist around you.”

— R.H. Swaney

Born in Rome, Olivia Gunn returned to her roots after a brief time of study at a university in Scotland. She is an honors graduate with a Bachelor of Arts in English from Gordon State College and is currently working on a book of essays and poetry as well as a memoir.

Recommended for you