1 January 2013

There's An Imp In My Garden

When I look out of the kitchen window into the post-apocalyptic landscape that is Garden65 in winter this little chap stares straight back.

For a large part of the year he is hidden in the undergrowth. You will only see him if you go looking. Or when weeding on hands and knees you suddenly find yourself nose to nose.

I like him there because he is a connection to the truer, undomesticated nature of the forces that exist in this small pathetic patch of Manchester. Like other gardeners I have some vague notion of being in control – I decide if plants live or die, I think – but in reality what happens within the confines of those straight fences is guided by what this chap with the mischievous smile represents. It’s a life force with a rascally mind of its own.

This time of year, though, he is smiling directly at me. It’s a bit disconcerting, I can tell you! There is a challenge in those eyes; an invitation to leave the comfy nest and stand out in the cold and rain with him, just to see what happens next.

So far I haven’t accepted that challenge because I’ve been on this earth long enough to know that it’s usually complicated scary things that happen if you go outside.

But then again, a dose of impish mischief would certainly liven up this suburban existence.