Apr 4, 2013
Of Wind and Violets
I went to visit the witch on the hill this week. She will soon be the witch on the farm. It is a dream come true for her, but also a bittersweet time as she leaves her home on the hill and the trees and land she has nurtured for so many years.
She walked me around her property, telling me stories about the trees she planted and where they came from. How very little they were when she put them in on the edge of the hill over looking vast meadows. The meadows are now a subdivision, and the trees grew tall enough to mostly shield her from the now cemented and landscaped land below.
She has more windchimes than I could count. Hung all over and each seeming to move of its own accord. He little piece of land isn't just a haven for birds and flora - there are others here too. You can tell the moment you walk through the gate. We chatted about how she may relate her re-location to these spirits. I tossed out an idea of burying a paper bearing her new address on it, to quite literally leave a forwarding address for those that may want to follow. She's hoping that some will want to join her elsewhere.
The spirit of the land there, will remain. And this is probably what leaves her looking a little blue, even while her dreams are being realized. The people who own the land are not going to rent it out again. Being retired and not up to keeping such a bustling property, she feels they will simply leave it to fade. Nature will reclaim it. After the grass and some of the trees die in the fierce summer heat. After the few plants that she can't take fade back into the earth for the last time. The hill will take it all back in.
But she will take whatever she can. She planted in containers mostly. Partially because it hurts her to bend over too much. Because of this, all the pots and vintage barrels and washtubs brimming with plants will come with her. A row of potted sweetgrass is coming, as well as strawberries dug up last season, and grape vines trained into containers to root so she can take a bit of her beloved grape with her.
She'll dig up some violets too. They grow all over her yard and are putting on a lovely show right now. I took a jar-full home to infuse in oil, along with a large bouquet of garden sage that had grown happily in her raised bed all winter, and some honeysuckle cuttings that I hope to root.
She'll take her father's tractor, and her grandfather's cauldron. The cauldron needs some care and not a small amount of elbow grease to remove the rust, but the 100 year old iron giant that was once used for canning pork, will find a special place for itself at the farm.
The wind will be there, at her new home, to dance with her chimes and perhaps to welcome any of her other 'friends' that come. She'll build a new haven on the farm, and have the home she always wanted. But I suspect that she'll never forget the house on the hill, with the trees that she grew from little seedlings and the violets that ran wild through the land.