It’s not just the plants that give me such pleasure, Deep in my garden lies its real hidden treasure.
I use my garden to grow my soul, To anchor my roots, to make me whole; To understand how good it can feel To weed out life’s trivia, to nurture what’s real; To connect with nature, finding peace in its earth, So how can I value what my garden is worth?
There is something quite magical about sitting and just watching the sun go down….
The sun starts to set, The air slowly cools, The fierce daytime heat Now no longer rules. On the stoep we have gathered For our usual observance Of the end of the day, The sun’s disappearance.
The dog has been walked, The wine has been poured, The stoep lamps are burning, Against insects secured; The last of the daylight Lingers far out to the West, It’s awesome changing vistas, Stirring senses from rest.
And as night supplants day The twilight is crowned By animals orchestrating That African sound. Guinea fowl roosting, Chattering away, Crickets endless chirping, Owls having their say.
Haunting sounds As the day’s put to rest, Another Karoo wonder By which we are blessed. And as the stoep lamps flicker And we watch the flames dance, The moths come to join us On their nightly advance.
Finally by the darkness We’re completely surrounded, Our mind, soul and body Now totally grounded. Of all of life’s crops Surely this is the cream, Sitting here on the stoep, Living our dream.
Sitting here watching the plants being battered by relentless gusts of wind, after having just endured a severe frost and wondering just what those poor leaves must be feeling.
It’s not easy being a leaf these days, By Jack Frost I’ve been abused, And now by a howling gale I’m being battered and bruised. If only I could be the plant’s root, Buried there beneath the ground, Away from frost and wind, A warm and peaceful haven found. Not being bothered by the hot sun. The outside world wouldn’t ever intrude, Just need the old man to give me water, And the occasional dose of plant food. With a worm or two for company, (Hopefully a mole I’d never meet), And some other roots to chat with, As we lay spreading our feet.
When a person seeks a refuge We call them a refugee, So when I’m in my garden Throw that mantle over me. It is my church, my special place, A sanctuary where I find peace; The world outside is kept at bay, And my soul can find release.
With hoe in hand or watering can, Under cloud or the blistering sun, Life’s petty worries are cast aside And with nature I become as one. My garden’s where I truly find peace As my plants I lovingly tend; A safe haven that beckons me each day, A refuge that’s become a true friend.
The feel of the earth as I work with my hands Makes the spirits inside of me rise; I can think of no place I’d rather be, No better sight for my sore, old eyes. How can I value these gifts I receive As my garden keeps on giving and giving? I’ve found my asylum, I’ve made my escape; A garden refugee; what a life to be living!
Perhaps getting up every morning at sparrows fart just so you can sit in seemingly endless queues of traffic isn’t the best way to start your day?
Imagine starting each day In the way that we do, Breakfast on a stoep A great mountain view; Sitting there chatting, No need to be rushed, The smell of fresh coffee, As the plunger is pushed. Fresh creamy yoghurt, Nice and thick, not too runny And drizzled all over, With local raw honey. Eggs sometimes scrambled, As the routine gets changed, With tomatoes and bacon For the yoghurt exchanged. Our day being planned, Or then again not, Discussing the weather, Is it going to be hot? Watching orioles and drongos At the fountain drinking, Planning garden improvements, Gets the grey matter thinking. Just chilling out Before the day has begun, As we sit on our stoep feeling Life’s jackpot’s been won.
One of the saddest sights in South African townships are the large number of neglected, hungry and maltreated dogs that roam around.
I don’t have a name, No one ever loved me that much, And from when I was a pup I’ve known no gentle touch; You see I’m a township dog And ever since my arrival My days have been spent Fighting just for survival. No bowls filled with food, I scavenge scraps instead, And I sleep where I can, There’s no comfortable bed. I’m often unwell, But there’s no vet to arrange, I’m covered in fleas And my coat’s full of mange. The long winter’s nights, I find nothing is worse, Those freezing cold winds Are this thin dog’s curse. I keep out of the way, Or else I get kicked, And for illegal dog fights I hope I’m never picked. At avoiding deadly traffic I’ve become quite adept, A parental skill I’ve thankfully kept. I don’t know another life, Being part of a home, Being loved and cared for, Not being left just to roam. As kindness is not something I’ve ever known, Then trust is not something I’ve ever shown. But who cares about me? Why should I be saved? I’m just a township dog, Alone and afraid.
A brief look at early morning on Christmas Day in Bedford…….
So what happened in Bedford On Christmas Day? Did Santa arrive With his reindeer and sleigh? Well, Pete couldn’t feed the reindeer, It’s been far too dry, And without food for the reindeer Santa was unable to fly. So to ensure the presents Arrived on your hearth, Santa used a scooter That he borrowed from Garth. So we had the sound of put-putting Instead of the sound of hooves, And sadly no sleigh perched On Bedford’s tin rooves. From his new petrol pumps Wolfie provided free fuel And there were drinks from SPAR To help keep Santa cool. As Santa passed Hope Street Charles played him a song (Sounded like Cliff Richard, Although I could be wrong). Abby tried to sell him a house, But Santa didn’t have time, Said on his return to Lapland He’d take a look online. Couldn’t stop for a portrait, So Ken got frustrated, And there was no time for Les To get social media updated. So there you have it, No reindeer, no sleigh But I hope that didn’t spoil Your Christmas Day.
As the chill morning air Banishes a few days of heat, And the rain gently falls, For our plants such a treat. A second pot of coffee, As if by magic; Not to soak up this splendour Would surely be tragic.
The camera shutter clicks, Must capture the morning As the mist cloaks the mountain, Of more rain it’s a warning. Searching for the energy To make a start to our day, Or should we just stay here? Perhaps we just may!
Under the jacaranda trees In the soft dappled shade, On a newly cut lawn, With a lunch freshly made; Sipping a cold drink, Eyes gently closing, The peace and the quiet, Awesome and imposing. Neon purple flowers Occasionally falling As the afternoon breeze Now comes a-calling. Butterflies float by, Their painted wings flapping, The dog missing their dance As she lies quietly napping. A drongo sits drinking At the water fountain; Watched over and guarded By our beautiful mountain. Our cottage might be small, But it’s big on the giving, It’s all we’ll ever need For the life we’re now living.