Tuesday, April 7, 2009

How Old is Too Old; Or, the Magic of Sprouting Seeds

Once at my parents' house, Kittyboy had "trained" his Papou to say "Open - shut - open - shut - open - shut" as he gleefully flipped the trashcan, you guessed it, open and shut. Papou, my Daddy, said it's a trait of all small children to be endlessly amused by the simplest of activities, and that G. K. Chesterton had written something about how only children and God say "Do it again!" I found the quote:

"A child kicks its legs rhythmically through excess, not absence, of life. Because children have abounding vitality, because they are in spirit fierce and free, therefore they want things repeated and unchanged. They always say, "Do it again"; and the grown-up person does it again until he is nearly dead. For grown-up people are not strong enough to exult in monotony. But perhaps God is strong enough... It is possible that God says every morning, "Do it again," to the sun; and every evening, "Do it again," to the moon. It may not be automatic necessity that makes all daisies alike: it may be that God makes every daisy separately, but has never got tired of making them. It may be that He has the eternal appetite of infancy; for we have sinned and grown old, and our Father is younger than we."

I thought of this as I was climbing onto Kittyboy's toy box for a better view of my pepper sprouts under the grow light:
There is something magical about watching seeds in dirt turn into sprouts. They change by the day and grow bigger and bigger and bigger. And this absolutely fascinates me. I learned the basics of germination in grade school; every one does, with a seed and a styrofoam cup. But I don't think I will ever tire of watching it. Regardless of how many bell pepper plants I want or need or even have space for, I feel this yearning to push more and more seeds into little peat pots and whisper to God, "Do it again!"
Everyone should garden. It keeps you young.


Pres. Kathy said...

I love the quote from K. Chesterton - thanks for sharing!

Mimi said...

I am such a black thumb, I tend to put things in the ground and let God water them.

Caeseria said...

Mimi, I have not a clue from whence my green thumb came, or how or why. As a child, I could kill aloe and spider plants. I am still perfectly capable of loving to death jade, mother-in-law's tongue, and other cacti-and-succulent plants which are supposed to be unkillable, but aloe loves me now, as do most succulents, and everything else just either grows or it doesn't. What likes me, likes me, what doesn't, dies.
Once it's in the ground, though, it's usually on its own. I'm not that great at weeding and watering.