Observations While Pacing the Lawn

After having outsourced the lawn mowing for the last two summers, I am back in the yard with a brand new battery powered mower – a Black and Decker v36 – and a renewed attitude about yardwork, or, as as I call it, “beating back the out of doors.” All the cutting and lopping and weeding seems as futile as dusting, but that is another story. Lets just say I do only as much yardwork as I absolutely have to. When Carlito said he needed a contract to mow every two weeks, that was my cue to get on board with the mowing again. The lawn does NOT need mowing every two weeks, at the most, every 3 weeks; and, during those drought summers, once every 2 MONTHS. Who knows what this summer will bring? Trudie got a mower and I am back pacing the lawn once again.

Today is the perfect day to do yardwork. I have all day. I know what I want to get done. The temperature is 75 degrees and the humidity is low. Bright blue sky with moderate amounts of various sized puffy white clouds over head. The mowing experience is much better this time round cause it is battery-powered, not electric, which means no more waltzing with the power cords. I love being able to mow a straight line all the way across the yard, and then turn around and walk back. Simple.

The grounds around our house are gorgeous thanks to Trudie, who tends to them daily. She loves checking on her little plants, giving them water, weeding and watching them grow. It is so sweet. She is growing some food, which is very exciting to both of us. I, on the other hand, I love the way plants take care of themselves. Only occasionally do they reach up and say, ” Give us a hand here, will you?” and that is my sign to take tool in hand and shear them back to a comfortable length. The rest they do on their own. And I am grateful!

So many thoughts come and go as I pace squares, curves and circles through out the yard. Mowing is quite meditative in a highly stimulating way. There is noise, movement, and numerous obstacles to shake up the center peace of the whole situation, but I keep moving and breathing. It really helps to feel my body alignment, what muscles are working and when, as I squeeze the handle, push, stop, and pull the mower. Breathing into those physical energy centers thins the flow of thoughts.

Then I start to really notice things. How thick the grass is, all the growth patterns in the yard, the baby crying next door, cars going round the culdesac. Suddenly, a black swallowtail butterfly flashes its neon blue and circles my head, twice. I stop the mower, so I can watch. She flies up on to a small, thin outcrop of branch and sits with her wings closed. She is shaped like an arrowhead and points toward the sky. I meet her for what seems like an eternity. When I speak her name. she flies up, around and away. That is how delicate and instantaneous our connection is. Too much effort and it shifts, sometimes more than I want it to. Just like my relationships with people I deeply love.

Recent meditations have revealed another “foible of me” – I have a nurturing disability. I am not a “born” nurturer. My nurturing instinct is called forth in certain times and with certain people, but it does not feel readily available to me. Nurturing feels like an important aspect of unconditional love. I know that my goal is to love unconditionally, so, for now, I sit with the question “Who is nurturing? ” and wait for a truth to reveal itself.

The lawn is shaven and looks neat and trim. This is a satisfying look, as it does appear tended and serene. I prefer it long, thick and wispy with the white clover tops showing. Ultimately. they are both only looks. Hahhaha- the lawn probably appreciates both! Lessons from the lawn!

What does all this have to do with “In C?” I haven’t been near the piece for weeks. One of my mowing thoughts was about how we can love something so intensely and magically that sometimes we just need a break, a breather, some still time away. I still fear the overwhelming aspects of surrender that deep engagement will lead to. So this week has been focused on completing a music project for a friend’s retirement party and reflecting on the healing power of love. I will get back to “In C” soon.

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