I love to take signs and clues from my everyday environment…so when the sweet peas that, all my life, have only ever flowered midsummer are still coming in my garden in November(!), I take that as a very good sign. Through wind, rain, low temperatures and frost, they just keep coming…though, in previous years, I’ve considered myself very fortunate indeed when they’ve bloomed for just two or three weeks in July.
My father grew them abundantly, up his shed wall, right where I used to like to play…and small jamjars of them sometimes made their way to my bedside. Synonymous with summer holidays and “all good things” to me; the very scent of happiest childhood at the time of year when school finished and I was free at last, I take this as yet another clue. Not only are these qualities asserting themselves to me, in spite of the harsher season, through this symbolic act of determination playing out in my garden but I see it as a clue that the much-needed feminine aspect in our world is becoming hardier. Not that she wasn’t hardy before (She has been through so very much…) but She is doing it outwardly now and blatantly, for all to see. She is sustaining and holding herself tall and yet tender (still being herself…) in the face of all the elements that might throw themselves at her, making the frosted mornings her own to become part of an unfamiliar season; a new paradigm, if you will. Her fragility has become her very strength in a garden where even the leaves of the trees have long-since given up and withdrawn; and so she and her companions make me smile at their eager encouragement each day that I open the shutters to find that they are still out there.