Thursday, May 5, 2011

This Bud's for You

Breaking news in the California wine country where I live: The vineyards have experienced "bud break"! That's what you see in my photo above...the new shoots have shot forth and the grapevines are reborn. It's cause for celebration in my region, makes the news and everything.

It IS wonderful to witness the renewal of things. It makes me downright cheerful, a state of mind I sorely needed after the pity-party I threw two weeks ago. Here's a snapshot of how things stood then:

I haven't been a happy camper inside my own soul. In that quiet place where I've found contentment through the years, a few words from a few unhappy people and a few sad situations wormed their way in and started putting down roots. [Here's the rest of "Hanging Pictures in the Sewer."]

Titanium over at Element 22 had something to say in response to a remark I made in that post, i.e., if I fall in a cesspool, pretty soon I start hanging pictures because I start feeling comfortable there. Here's what Ti had to say about that:

"There’s something in these dark places, too. Like bulbs wintering over in a cool cellar, devoid of sunlight, all we can see and smell is the desiccation, the decay, the frailty of our own wintering-over. It is a season of the soul, this dark place- and one that will feed the source of the green shoots that are soon to come.

"Without the winter, the dark, the stink- there couldn’t be new growth. Sometimes we have to be cut back and cut down completely in order to return full of life. The green shoots are coming through the soil with these words of yours and soon the sunlight and gentle rain will coax flowers like you’ve never seen.

"In truth, if each one of us is NOT a troubled soul, we are not stirred in any way. Try to see ‘troubled’ as a transitive verb. See it as the transition that it is, the agitation of soul that stirs change and growth. Sometimes even the unkind messengers are prophets unknown, harbingers of change that was already blowing in the wind."

What are your thoughts on Ti's equation: agitation = growth?


Elisabeth said...

I couldn't agree more, agitation is good for growth, however unsettling. Without change we grow sterile, but it can be tough, in any case.

I'm pleased to see the greening of your land while ours turns to red, yellow and brown in advance of the grey of winter.


the walking man said...

I think it should be POTENTIAL for growth. I have seen agitated people do some pretty stupid things that ruined not only their lives but left others in ruin as well.

Brian Miller said...

aint Ti so cool...she is one smart cookie...i agree...i often need agitating...

Linda said...

Mild agitation may facilitate growth but too much can leave bad scars. I think we all want a reason for why we suffer and so make up things about pain and how it will help us grow to be stronger people. Sometimes pain, or agitation, simply takes its toll and the best thing that can happen is it eventually leaves and we then move on.

The Poetry Bus said...

Thought I was getting a Budweiser! Doh!

Anonymous said...

Chris, thank you for continuing the conversation! It’s funny, I was pondering aspects of this theme over the weekend and questioning my own rationale. I’ve made some specific choices that have taken me out of my comfort zone by a long shot in the last three years, and the results have been beyond my wildest dreams. I am the first to admit that I resent Change when it arrives and more often than not, greet it less than hospitably.

When all is said and done, I’ll take the good with the bad, the pain along with the Absence of Pain (a condition which I am really, really fond of) for the sake of growth.

Mama Zen said...

I agree with Ti. Change (even really good stuff) is scary. Sometimes we have to get to a fairly uncomfortable spot before we are willing to jump.

Steve E said...

WOW! that header makes me want to go out and buy a real nice new lawn mower!

Chris, your site is beautiful, and your descriptions of your own quarreling with self, and then that growth--well, it is inspiring--even to an old man!


Magpie said...

What a quandary...I see truth in what Ti says. I think that we are like trees in that we need the winds to strengthen us and deepen our root system. Gentle breezes are needed in the beginning with stronger winds necessary before we gain strength. But we need to be mindful of when we are creating our own tempests and avoid those situations which would cause our root system to rot.

Friko said...

It was your profile which drew me in.

Apart for the alcoholic bit, you were surely speaking about me? (Replace prescription drugs and you've got me to a t.

You describe yourself as a gardener: well you know it's true about the pruning and cutting back and the new shoots. That may all sound too twee to be taken seriously, but although hackneyed, it's true.

Your header picture looks a lot like the place where I live, get out there if you can, walk off the demon black dog; then come back and blog something silly or funny.

It helps me.

Dianne said...

oh yes yes yes, I AM fighting the time to trim the dead branches, but I do feel the dark hybernation slows the frenzy in my soul. It gives the pending new growth time to swell, time to fill, time to stop reaching for a spell. Ti is so wise and so articulate. I Love her.

take the slow and stop, look, listen for the time to burst a bud...