Nightfall

The sun has slipped below the horizon, the end of a gardening day . I straighten my back and brush soil from my hands. Distant mature ashes and limes are printed inky black against a last glow of daylight as it dips into ochre dusk. A damp coolness rises up from the earth, a blackbird calls out his nightly watch and I stack my gardening tools away for the night.

Shadows thicken as I put the kettle on to boil and I gaze deep into the growing twilight of the garden,  until the gloom seems to ebb and flow with crepusculous speckles that I can barely sense. Between the bat that flickers around my periphery vision, and the still silhouette of my cat on a garden wall.

In the settled pause of twilit teatime, I make my brew and wait, watching the garden unfurl in the gloaming, exhaling, filling it’s own space, and spreading out in the dusk.

Jean Dark
Earth Pathways Diary
4th April 2016

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This Week in Earth Pathways…

Vision of a Sacred Garden

 Back in February 2011 at a Pagan conference in Chester I had the good fortune to take part in a guided pathworking lead by Glennie Kindred, the author of the pagan primer “The Earth’s Cycle of Celebration” and part of the Moonshares Collective who annually produce the Earth Pathway Diary – a pagan “network and resource for Earth lovers, environmentalists, artists, writers and activists”.

On that winter afternoon in the dimly-lit hall Glennie Kindred’s soft calming voice and her drumming drew us deep into ourselves, where she encouraged us to discover and visualise our deep wishes and hopes. Some way in, I found myself immersed in green light, flickering around me like sunlight through pale fresh leaves, I drifted amongst branches creaking in the breeze, I saw and ran in a meadow, danced by a fire, lay back in long grass, gazing at ripe red fruits growing overhead. When I surfaced, still gleaming from my reverie I was handed a bowl of green slips of paper cut into leaf-shapes. I chose a leaf that looked to me like an apple tree leaf and wrote that I had dreamed of a green and magical place, a Sacred Garden to steward.

At the time I lived in a ground floor flat in a 1960s council block. Although it was a comfortable and compact apartment, it was also very square, plain and functional, a blank white box. The strip of garden was a lawn visible from the bedroom window, municipalised by default into an unexciting communal greensward. A twisty shady garden hidden away amongst thickets, like I had envisioned, seemed like a world away…read more