Keeping current in wellness, in and out of the water
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Spring has sprung here in Arizona. We have another month of daily ruby red grapefruit harvest, which is my favorite crop of the year. I juice them and think they do wonders for my health. Since we have had a very mild winter, with the exception of a harsh freeze that ruined some plants, the trees are in bloom early. This can mean that we will be sure to have an early crop of peaches, or it could mean that survival is all the more tricky since we may dip back down in temperature before the fruits can ripen. Gardening requires both close observation and plenty of patience. Nature sometimes thrills us with the delicious outcome of our labors, but just as often some pest or weather storm renders our efforts useless. I have had some kind of garden for all of my adult life. I have had a revelation about gardening and writing that I want to share with you in this post.
Now that I am regularly spending time listening to and reading poetry I see that a well manicured garden resembles a well tuned and well edited piece of writing. Even though all the writers have different styles, I notice that the choice of words as well as the way the sound works has been nurtured and fed. Some of the initial choices have been eliminated, just as weeds are pulled and mulch set on the ground to keep them from returning. The editing process creates a stronger work just as thinning makes larger sweeter peaches. Keeping every one of the fruits is penny wise and pound foolish. After the muse brings the word or the subject or the image to light, the writer must work the creative mental soil, feed the story, and decide when and where to trim for effect. The volunteer plants and some of my current work have something in common. Although they have not been fully worked, or given time to evolve into something more complete, they grew up naturally from a seed that had fallen in the past. Like yellow pear tomatoes, this natural offspring of my imagination, can turn out never ending butterfly psyche poems, if left undisturbed.
Spending more time taking notes, spinning rhymes, and considering new territory for my writing I am pleased with all I have learned. My #ROW80 mates have inspired as well as instructed me in ways I had never expected. Thanks to all of you. I have found a great resource to consult that some of you may also enjoy. The U of A Poetry Center, of which you have heard me tell, has a library of recorded readings called voca. Poets read from their work and explain some of the process they used. This has opened my eyes to the many devices and forms that might be used to write a poem. Everything can be used as inspiration, and any writing has the possibility of becoming great, if edited with sensitivity.
The use of flower essences was made popular by Dr Bach in the first half of the 20th century. He was a physician who discovered the effects on his own emotions when he took simple essences of flowers. His formulas are used widely today, the most famous being rescue remedy, which is a combination of flowers. I have used these concentrated bottled products for years and find them to be effective. However, when the flowers bloom I enjoy making and drinking fresh pure flower remedies.
Practitioners of this method must know and study carefully the proper dosage for a patient. Since I am enjoying my own, I am not concerned with the conventional practice of using a few drops diluted in alcohol for a remedy. I drink much larger quantities straight up. I always know the meaning of the flower and the cure for which it is used commercially. There are many local companies doing remedies now, so finding a reference to a specific flower is not so hard. It does require the use of the Latin name. Common names in botany can lead to serious errors.
My peach tree is in bloom now and the bees are busy turning the blooms into peaches. I will make an essence when the weather warms later in the week. Peach, Prunus persica, is used for altruism. It is a catalyst that facilitates the release of tension by those who fret excessively over their own problems. It allows nurturing from wholeness rather than from neediness. It is recommended for external application. This is important. The remedy works if you put it in a bath or rub it into the skin. You do not need to consume it to enjoy the benefits. The first step in making an essence is to meditate on the plant. Enter a quiet state, the best you can, and ask the plant for healing.
This is not natural to you yet, but if you do it for a while, you will begin to feel (notice, perceive) the plant respond to your request. Staying quiet and respectful, pay attention as you pick the flowers so as not to strip or deplete the tree. Placing the flowers in a clear vessel full of clear water, rest the glass container in the sun (or moon) for a while. This is subjective. Do not let it become sun tea, as the flower is delicate. Stop before the flower wilts, but after a taste has entered the water. It often tastes like cucumber or melon. Roses, iris, violets, and citrus taste just like they smell, which is lovely. Peach has little smell or taste, but the beauty of the flowers makes a very happy meditation.