She missed the garden; her haven; her refuge. There, she had sung songs to herself, quietly encouraging the seeds she set down in the dark earth to grow. There, with dirty fingernails, smudged face, and smile, she could feel at peace. No negative thoughts, no fears or forebodings. Just the smell of the earth, the whisper of the plants as they grew, the song of the birds as they blessed the rows of corn, potatoes, tomatoes, interlaced with the pumpkin and squash vines to keep the raccoons at bay. Marigolds to repel bugs, gladiolus for their boundless beauty.
Some days she ached for the peace, for the simpleness then. When she still had hopes; when she still had dreams. When seed catalogues brought rich illustrations of all the possibilities.
Everywhere since, she had planted something – a window box, a sunflower in an earthenware pot; even guerilla gardened by scattering wildflower seeds in abandoned urban lots where scraggly weeds and crumbling houses struggled to stay upright.
She needed the smell of the earth, the warmth of the sun. Nothing but a garden could provide that. Closeted, without dreams and hope, she knew that her garden days were over. She sighed.
Somewhere, a seed, deep inside the winter ground, awoke. Knowing that spring was yet possible, it began to reach for the sun it could not see but feel. It was one of her seeds, those wildflower seeds thrown to the wind of urban decay.