Furu ike ya kawazu tobikomu mizu no oto
Ancient pond; in jumps a frog – sound of water
Basho – Japanese Poet
The pond returns to silence at St. Peter’s Community garden. We’ve been left with a reminder of the hundreds of frogs who visited over the past couple of weeks though – frog spawn, huge gelatinous piles of it reaching right down to the silty depths in places. Though now it seems quiet, inside those hundreds of thousands of eggs our new arrivals begin their path of metamorphosis. Spawn to tadpoles, tadpoles to miniature frogs – a process that left me spellbound as a child and still does to this day. After about one month we’ll start to see tadpoles and then I think we’ll really feel spring is finally here.
Sometimes by the end of winter it feels as though it has always been winter, as though we’ve never known spring or summer. But we dig the vegetable beds and start to plant seeds for next years crops – each seed a different size, shape, and texture. I always get a sense of enchantment as I push the broad beans into their pots or sprinkle rows of celeriac or cauliflower seeds into trays. Now each day we go in and check to see if anything is coming up. As the days grow longer, the sun begins to take the chill from the wind, and fresh growth from flowering spring bulbs scents the air I feel a positivity starting to germinate inside me.
Good luck to our frogs! Here’s to new life and a new year!