Saturday, April 19, 2008

Everyday Eden

Happy Almost Earth Day! On this even before EarthFest it is raining, and it looks to be raining a good bit tomorrow. But earlier in the day it was lovely and unseasonably warm. I done done my duty: finally my composter, which for the last several years was nestled idle among the trees at Xs, is up here, guarded with a little wire, and inside at the bottom there's a small pile of vegetable matter scattered with leaves. I walked to my local hardware store and acquired the wire and a pitchfork, showing my optimism that within a few weeks I'll have the beginning of a nice batch of humus to start turning.

I spent last night and a little while this afternoon also at the park, although I am finding more and more that as the weather returns, exercise along the bike path becomes a social event, and the outdoors for me is more of a way to gain solitude. My son has often said it's far easier to run on the grass than on concrete where the bikers and rollerbladers and dogwalkers and scooterists and teenage girls three astride in their flipflops and strollergoers and frogcatchers all assemble themselves too on a day like today. So I guess if I'm to enjoy whatever bit of Eden I can without offending masses and weaving in and out, I'll have to follow his advice and go well off the path.

But that's ok. I'm social by nature but even I sometimes miss the solitude my days sometimes held. The woods, the green grassy open spaces, time by the water are all healing places for me, and restore me to a fresher, quieter state of mind ready to roll with whatever punches come.

Tomorrow we'll celebrate Earth Day a few days early and from about 6:30 a.m. on at the Cleveland Zoo I'll be greeting eager volunteers while sneaking sips of my coffee in between. By the end of the day I'm sure I'll need to find a little bit of Eden.

And y'all should, too! Do something to commemorate your connection to the earth this weekend. Whether you like to play in the dirt with your plants or go for a hike or take a drive in your fuel-efficent car to pick up some new organic cotton socks and a free-range chicken for the dinner table, I'm sure you can find a way to enjoy the bounty of a spring day, even if it just means taking a deep sniff of rain-cleared air.

Here's one of my favorite people doing one of my favorite tunes about this very thing. Tracy Grammer and Dave Carter recorded this song, Gentle Arms of Eden, about a year before his untimely death. Today Tracy sings all his songs and quite a few of her own. Here she is joined by Jim Henry, Tracy's collaborator and performing and recording companion.


Gentle Arms of Eden (YouTube)


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