I have a garden – I have worked on it for three years now since I moved to my tiny township in rural Eastern Ohio.  At one time this land belonged to a farmer most likely and there was a family who lived here…who knows how many people have lived here and walked through here…on their way to somewhere else as they moved westward to explore and settle.

As I cut through tall grass and brush so that I could get to the dirt to see what was there, I discovered lots of stuff – perennials I could nurture, buried toys, trash, big rocks, and, of course, worms.  I rearranged the big rocks that I could move and planted more perennials and annuals and lots of top soil…and placed bird feeders around so that I could create my ‘zen garden.’

Except for some noise from the nearby road and the sounds of kids playing outside and the birds – and, oh yes, my beautiful wind chimes I got for a bargain at a garage sale – it is quietly peaceful.  And, so tranquil.  I can sit and think and reflect on my big and little thoughts about what all I went through to get to this spot…and it’s a lot!

I write this during momentous happenings in the world – the pandemic; the recent horrible death of George Floyd; the protests occurring all over the world; the apparent disconnect of the leader of these United States.  But here, in my garden – I am at peace in nature’s ‘silence’ – and I am grateful for this place…and, of course, the worms.

Jana Larsen

June 10, 2020