Spring in the garden

I plant seeds and tidy the greenhouse

as three slow worms bask peacefully

in the sun.


I love slow worms, and it makes me so happy to know that I share my garden with them. They look like little copper coloured snakes, but are actually legless lizards. One lives in the raspberry bed, one in a hole in the patio and one in the wall near the woodshed. There are probably more, I just haven’t spotted them yet.

Rough edges

My garden,

like much of my life,

a little scruffy,

a little rough around the edges,

beautiful to my eyes

but perhaps not everyone’s

cup of tea.

Today I watched

a queen red-tailed bumblebee

dusted in golden pollen

feasting on a dandelion,

mother of next summer’s bees

sustained by my laziness,

my dislike of weeding.

Perfection may ensnare us

but it is a sterile thing,

there is treasure

to be found

in the wild,

in the untamed,

at the rough edges of life.

An encounter

Yellow-tailed black cockatoos, original painting on silk

I walked, insignificant beneath

giant eucalyptus,

peeling bark hanging in strings,

revealing subtle pinks,

oranges, greys.

Through tree fern gullys, tracery of

fronds filtering the sun,

shady green, dappled.

And everywhere, birds flitted,

colourful, exotic to my eyes.

The parched fallen gum leaves

crackled beneath my feet.

I was almost, but not quite, lost,

weary after hours of walking,

but now heading in the direction

of home.

My head was full of colours and sounds,

the smell of eucalyptus

welcome in my nostrils.

And then, a familiar call,

a stirring in the trees ahead,

the sense of being watched

a glimpse of movement,

and suddenly I was surrounded

by black cockatoos.

I stopped in wonder,

in awe.

I must have spent an hour

watching, camera clicking

while they chatted and pecked

and clambered around the branches.

They knew I was there.

They didn’t care.

I was the one who was

blessed by our meeting.

Everyday contentment

A hailstorm engulfed the woods.

I walked, partially sheltered by

the bare branches,

cocooned, warm in my coat as

the hailstones drummed on my head.

It passed over, the last balls of ice

bounced off my hair as

I put my hood down.

I emerged into sunshine,

a cool fresh breeze,

and contentment.


You can always find contentment if you walk far enough!

Home

I lived away,

for too long.

Leaving after a visit,

or passing by

on the train

or on the motorway,

I would press my nose

to the window

letting the silhouettes

of the mountains

fill me up,

cricking my neck

for that final glimpse

as I headed north.

There were hills there, too,

but they weren’t my hills.

Now I am back home

for good.

Judgement

Imagine

turning certainty

and judgement

into wondering,

into curiosity.

How then

would we see

this world?


I joined a really interesting coach training course this week, all about releasing judgement.

I thought it would be a good one for me to do, because sometimes I can be very judgemental. The current political climate does not bring out the best in me!

It is so easy to slip into a judging mind-set, comfortable even. It means I don’t have to think, to put myself into another’s shoes, to feel the discomfort of acknowledging that maybe someone else’s opinions are just as valid as mine. To assume that I know why they say what they say, why they do what they do.

And then there are self-judgement, comparison, self-criticism. For as much as I judge other people I also judge myself, and my work.

Two things really struck me:

Comparison

Instead of comparing myself with others, how about looking back at how I was at a point in the past, or how I would like to be in the future? So instead of looking at the blogger with thousands of followers and feeling discouraged, not good enough, I look back to a year ago when I had less than 10 followers and I realise how far I’ve come. Or I imagine a future where lots of people read my blog and I work out how to get to that point and then take the steps to get there.

Judgement

Instead of thinking I know why something is as it is, I could be open and curious instead.

Ultimately, judging is just part of being human. I can just notice that I am doing it and let it go. Another one of those under the category ‘simple but not easy’!

What do you think? Do you have any tips for releasing judgement?