The Less Obvious World

There is a game that I sometimes play when I’m on the train and I don’t feel like reading (which is rare) or I’m too tired to read (which is more common) and it doesn’t have a name, although it could be characterised as The Negative Tree Game, if a label is required.

This is how it started. It must have been after I began a hands on interest in some aspects of gardening – although I doubt Laetitia would describe my contribution in this area as hands on – and I was gazing out the window, on the train, and it occurred to me how much of the train line that I use is lined by informal and not planned, in a regimented way at least, trees, shrubs, bushes, flowers, and other growing plant things. Until you reach the city there is no stretch between two consecutive stations that is bare of foliage, and that applies to both sides of the train line. Quite impressive. And a lot of it is very beautiful, especially when you consider that minimal if any landscaping has occurred and in a lot of cases pruning happens once or twice a year, if at all – and what is already there is left to fend for itself. And I recall when I first noticed it, and noticed, as well, all the domestic greenery which can be seen also, in pots and running along fences and growing out of lawns and in windows and framing pathways, and it struck me that it is a world of plant life, at least as important as the word of bricks and concrete and telegraph poles, and I got, I’ll admit, a strange sort of thrill from this realisation, this recognition of the power and energy of the growing world which is all around us and with us all day. Wonderment of a kind caused a smallish dumb smile on my face.

And the game itself is blocking out the non-greenery. Negating the non-trees, as if seeing only blank, unless there are shrubs and petals and branches. That’s all you see: the green. And there is an astonishing amount of it. And it is soothing to focus upon.

Published in: on March 24, 2011 at 7:08 pm  Comments (1)  

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One CommentLeave a comment

  1. Grinning, welcome to my world.
    Planning for day’s or weeks what and where to plant is a human thing. Plants, bushes, trees, left to their own devices will sort it out and locate them self’s in locations that best suit their needs for sun and soil nourishment.
    Generally when I have a bare spot, I will plant something I like looking at, whether it be for it’s foliage or flowers.
    Once planted I give it a nice drink of water and and in a low calm voice tell it, now live or die, this decision is now up to you, and walk away.

    Happy Gardening

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