Posted by: ktzefr | May 29, 2015

10 Days in Kentucky: on parenting and planting, wildflowers and weddings

Back from Kentucky…

I empty the coffee filter into the impatiens, remembering that my mom fertilized with coffee grounds and egg shells that she had steeped in water.  She was diligent about attending to her plants.  Every year she had a profusion of blooms. 

When I came back home I found the porches littered with helicopters.  The maple trees in front and back yards had sent down enough seeds to populate a mountainside.  I spent the morning sweeping the porches and pulling tiny maple seedlings from the window boxes.  

For several days this spring I watched a mom and pop robin perch in the dogwood where they could keep an eye on the nest with their newborns.  They took turns flying off to find worms.  When we came home the babies were gone.  Birds are dependable, their behavior instinctive.  It looks like something akin to unconditional love.  Baby robins do not take notes on how to parent as they are being raised.  They will simply do what they are supposed to do when the time comes — feed, nurture, and teach their own young how to fly.  What more can you ask of a parent?

I learned to fly in Kentucky.  If a bird’s view of the world is greatly influenced by where it learns to fly, I suspect the same is true for humans.  The way the earth looks in the place where one first becomes airborne leaves a lasting impression.   It colors the way all other places are seen and understood.

Things I saw, heard, and/or understood on my recent trip to Kentucky…

Yellow wildflowers amongst weeds by the roadside.

The hayfield lit up at night with hundreds of fireflies. 

A horse bathing in the pond.  Life’s pretty good when you can find a place to cool off and keep your head above water.


The surprise of cheddar cheese in the lasagna at the first Italian restaurant in town because locals “won’t eat those Italian cheeses.”

My mom’s rose, planted years ago when she could enjoy it, still blooming as if nothing had changed. 


Conversation overheard: “I wouldn’t trust him long enough for the water to boil.”  🙂

Two weddings: one in a church and the other in a field by the river.  Globos (Chinese fire lanterns) aloft in the night sky; fireworks at the farm.  Champagne flutes filled with water (it’s a “dry” county).

Honeysuckle draped over the back porch railing. 


Waking up to the cooing of doves in the woods.

A shattered vase still holding its beauty in the fragments. 

To be whole is a miracle.



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