At last, I am back at the “morning table” writing an account of life on the rabbit patch. I have not written in the diary for a week-and “something felt missing” because of it. It surprised me to find out, that I have become so accustomed to the internet. While we were waiting for a new line to be installed, I collected all sorts of questions. The topics ranged from “african violets” to “sea glass.” I also wondered how everyone was faring. I care for the people that read the diary and consider them “friends” though I would not recognize many faces. I do not know what sort of houses they dwell in, yet I “know them by heart”. It is a beautiful thing to consider, I think.
My son, Tres got quite a bit accomplished on his weekend visit. I say again, without shame, that he is wonderful. I have been painting-again. The awnings are a cheerful sight, with their red and white stripes. I have only a few minutes of work left. and then it will give me great pleasure to put that ladder back in the barn. I am halfway through the floor of the porch. I ran out of paint and so must go get some more, today. Oh, what a difference paint makes. A freshly painted porch with geraniums, is a pleasant place to abide. I painted flower pots for zinnias at the back door. When the appraiser comes, I hope they take notice of my efforts.
Keeping the yard mowed has been difficult this year. My mower has been “in the shop” quite a bit. Still, the rose -of -sharon bushes are doing their part-and the mimosa blooms, making the air so sweet. The roses are reliable and so are the hydrangeas. If charm makes a difference, then the rabbit patch, should have no fear of the formality of an appraisal. I cling to that-but Tres and Will are experts at keeping me grounded in such matters. Geraniums do little to impress them, nor does the peach tree with peaches hanging in abundance, Will and Tres look at beams and windows. Still, I hope that things like old trees, do make a difference.
Butterflies are all over the rabbit patch, these days. It is hard to be grumpy when the air is full of brightly colored wings fluttering about. Butterflies are friendly and apt to say hello as I toil in the awful heat. They especially love zinnias and “butterfly bushes “. I made up my mind yesterday, to plant for the butterflies wherever I dwell, in the future. I never caught butterflies in my childhood. I never wanted to, fearing I would cause harm to them. The world does not need one less butterfly. When, I go back to Elizabeth City, I plan to find butterflies for Lyla.
In July, the early morning light is soft and the air is damp and cool. I walked out the other morning and a mist was hanging over the field. The whole territory was still and silent. The air bore the scents of blooming things. I remembered being young on the farm. Work started early, but no matter how early, you weren’t going to escape the southern heat. By late morning, it was hot.
In July you can smell corn growing, when the sun shines on it. You can smell rain long before you see it. You can smell a patch of watermelons, too. Old people said they could smell snakes, because snakes smell like watermelon. If you smelled watermelon out of season, it was a bad sign. I do not know if this is so, as the scent of watermelon, caused me to leave from wherever I was, just in case, it proved true.
The other night, I went out to say good night to the world. I always do so. I think of what I am grateful for and say a prayer of thanksgiving. I lift any sorrows to somewhere north of the moon -just like Lylas’ bubbles, I imagine them disappearing when they reach the heavens. In July, there are millions of stars in the night sky. To stand in “star light” is like standing by the ocean. I feel small, but far from insignificant. I feel humbled, yet, one with the “Mighty Author” of life. I think “The Heavens really do declare His glory” and I know . . I must show Lyla the stars, too.
Dear Diary, I am glad for July, when the world is full of butterflies and stars come out in great numbers. I am glad for the cool shade of old trees and friends that “I know by heart.”