A GARDEN CATHEDRAL
“So will I build my altar in the fields,
And the blue sky my fretted dome shall be,
And the sweet fragrance that the wild flower yields
Shall be the incense I will yield to thee.”
~ Samuel Taylor Coleridge
The grower of trees, the gardener, the man born to farming, whose hands reach into the ground and sprout, to him the soil is a divine drug. He enters into death yearly, and comes back rejoicing. He has seen the light lie down in the dung heap, and rise again in the corn. ~ Wendell Berry
The pleasure of eating should be an extensive pleasure, not that of the mere gourmet. People who know the garden in which their vegetables have grown and know that the garden is healthy will remember the beauty of the growing plants, perhaps in the dewy first light of morning when gardens are at their best. Such a memory involves itself with the food and is one of the pleasures of eating. (pg. 326, The Pleasures of Eating) ~ Wendell Berry
No walls but beds that hold the soil,
welcoming all to join the toil
of life giving ways.
Warmth of sun and saturating rain,
call forth seed to rise and proclaim
of life and resurrection ways.
Gardening is life in so many ways. It is a way of getting back to the elements that make up our very bodies, for we are mud creatures, created from the earth. There is a sense of connectedness that can only arise when we are in nature in communion with soil, seed, plant, flower, tree, and fruit. God is a gardener and has always called us back into the symbiotic relationship that began in the garden among the trees and plants. In a world that has become so mechanized and digitized and industrialized, we find that we have become disconnected from ourselves and community. A community garden can be a cathedral of rich spiritual energy, storytelling, labor giving, harvesting, and giving away. This is the body of Christ and a way of food justice, when our toil answers the question of healthy eating, food deserts, food independence, and hunger abatement. This is love in action, on our knees in the seedbed and cultivating life regulated not by a clock or an artificial rhythm, but the rhythm of weather, season, and planting cycles. This is liturgy and this is a way of being the church that dances to the cosmic dance of God in a garden cathedral.
Join me, won’t you? Email me for details. Life is calling you to serve.
In God’s garden,