Do birds ever wake up and ask themselves if they feel like singing?
Does rhubarb question whether or not to stretch out from the dark, snug soil into the capricious atmosphere of spring?
Do blueberries, crowded into plastic pots, driven 240 miles from the only garden they've ever known, forced to winter over in a dark garage with only an infrequent handful of snow for hydration ask themselves whether or not to swell dormant buds when dragged out into the sunlight?
For this strawberry conditions have not been even close to ideal and yet she's eager to be on with the job.
Some days I am overwhelmed and dispirited by this separation from Jerome and the responsibilities of nurturing and shaping our farm into the vision I have for it. I drag my blue self from a sleepless bed and wonder what I'm doing here. Then I catch the flash of crimson and hear a clear, eager song just outside the window. I remember a conversation with my son, Phillip, a high school math teacher and coach. We were discussing going into school to teach on days when we'd prefer to be anywhere else but in class. I asked him how he managed it and his answer was "I put my game face on" and get the job done. And today that's just what I chose to do.
We spent hours working in the flower beds which were allowed to grow wild last summer and became totally invaded by grasses and creeping charlie and gangster goldenrod. Despite the fatiguing labor there were discoveries that spurred us on. For hours before and after lunch we worked. We ache, we are poked and scratched and invaded by thorn and burr and splinter. And the garden worked her magic once again. Spirits lifted.
It is raining now and the prediction is for possible daily rain into the foreseeable future, so we may get some rest from our gardening labors for a while and get back to our inside selves. And in the morning, should doubt and sadness and questions threaten I will once again put on my game face and strive to get the job done.