There are times, gardening here in the Flint Hills, that I am frustrated beyond endurance, tired of fighting the fierce winds, the stony ground, the late spring freezes, and the summer swelter. The ice storms, the periodic and seasonal droughts, and the ever-present danger of prairie fires are just a few of the traumas that batter my gardening soul. There are also moments, however, when the incredible beauty of the Flint Hills takes center stage and lightens my burden:
Or as it did yesterday morning, when my back garden emerged clear and calm above the misty lower pastures (above).
Early in the season, the sparse early blooms may be washed out by the bright noon sun, but with morning light and a little dew, the lilacs in the foreground pop and the colors of the purple smoke tree in the background seem somehow more vivid. As the garden greens with spring, so my heart rises, buoyed out of fog with my growing garden.