Many reasons. Mom is a pyromaniac. No one who knows her thinks I'm kidding. Liked to go into the woods with a beer, a hot dog, and her dog / cat retinue and light big fires. This act has all the Druidic bells and whistles: mind-altering drink; hot dogs / sacrifice; dog/cat whatever; big fires. And then there is her general Gallic personality. And Grandma Sassenger. And Dad's share of shaman DNA, from Wales and South Carolina. I'm in.
Supporting this argument, The Facts: I compulsively compost organic material, from onion skins to tree limbs, knowing I will go to hell if this ritual is not religiously followed. My Immaculate Conception Garden (detailed a few posts back) is living proof of my Druidic Universe Entanglement. The Virgin Mary statue left guarding my garden over the years has attracted a fine following of un-husbandry type yields. That is, they don't get planted, they just grow. Is that Virgin, or What? And....I just finished a quickie mind-candy novel on druids in Hibernia. And other things . . . . . . . Although these mystic feelings, when they stir, make me feel guilty like I'm cheating on Carl Sagan/ ultimate Real Science person: they stir.
But the big thing THIS week that convinces me of my Druidic bent is the Arugula In The Yard. This summer was nasty, hot, and dry. I gave up on the flora denizens of my yard. They were on their own. I thought we should all just give up and die. But no. THEY struggled on.
The grass died. The weeds thrived. My never-been-planted-by-Human-Hands specialty cherry tomatoes flourished. The Blue Balls from Space Thistles increased. The Rose of Sharon bushes, planted to screen the neighbor's kid's playhouse from me--and the Burning Bush, allowed to grow rampant to shield the other neighbors from me period---went wild. Note: these are all Biblical type names.
So a few days ago I allowed myself a leisurely cold six-pack whilst sitting in my pergola and observing the growth pattern of my second-year grape vines. Not up to wine making, yet. But while enjoying the recently reviving weather pattern, it suddenly hit me as I glanced around my teeny yard domain: the grass was dead, but the Arugula was Growing. In the middle of the Dead Grass.
This, I mused, is like another Resurrection. (These--resurrections--happen in my yard all the time.)
So it seems that it would be the wiser option to embrace this unavoidable reality. Me and the flora have an understanding. Whether I will or not. The Arugula seems to have sent the SIGN that it will take over the formerly wasted space where dubious grass grew. IT has decided to thrive through old growth/ dead growth grass, and who knows how in the hell it got there in the first place. I have indeed planted Arugula in the past, and may have neglected to dispose of it's discarded, past-peak progeny immediately in isolated conatiners. That is, I might have left it's clearings laying all over the yard when it was at its seed peak. I don't remember doing that, but hey. It Lives. Nay, It Thrives. What The.
Friends are uneasy about the whole mystic revelation thing, as manifested by their reaction to Arugula in gift bags to them. "Are you sure," they politely inquire when I tell them where it came from, "that this is Arugula, and not some deadly poisonous weed that your yard is trying to kill people with?" They can accept my reassurances. Or not. I Know.
I have not put any chemicals on the yard since it became mine, purchasing the house over a decade ago. This means: I have organic dandelions growing everywhere. ORGANIC dandelionn GREENS.
Uh-Huh. I can give up doing other stuff, follow the lead of my flora friends, and become an ageing hippied organic salad dispenser. The whole green thing in my yard renews constantly if I bother to mow it; newly sprouted Arugula and Dandelion Greens could be mine ALL YEAR. Who in the heck needs a yard of grass, with the power of druidic flora behind them?
With a deck of Tarot cards in my hand-- 'cause as a linguist/artist/ musician I do Symbols like Nobody's Business--this could be a package.
I cannot ignore the role of the The Virgin's Chipped Plaster Statue in my garden, in the decidedly increasingly interesting twist to my involuntary Druidic investment. Which statue's presence I think has added to the pot of interesting and wildly independent growth patterns in my yard/ garden. The Virgin is, some believe, the vestigial Catholic Christian nod to Gaea/ Earth Mother religions, quashed milleniaium ago by jealous type male chauvinists. To the Druidic worship of all life.
Arugula, beautiful name, beautiful smell, beautiful taste, growing in my yard. I'm going to till up the entire side of my pergola facing my teeny garage and devote it to the Magic Arugula next spring. Next Spring; the hope of every true Druid, the call of every wild garden, and wild gardener. The promise of rebirth, the lure of fantasy, the call of the wild.