28 May 2015

Even now, on the edge of winter, the farm is a place of sparkling joy. Sun streams through the windows, warming the concrete floor, hitting points of sparkle. It’s almost too warm, with the embers of last night’s fire still glowing.

Outside, the hardenbergia is covered in flower buds, ready to open into a sprawling carpet of purple. Bean seeds are starting to come up, the boofheads of the plant world, shoving their heavy leaf through to the light. Lettuce seeds, carrot seeds, kale seeds have sprouted, making their way through the soil with their distinctive leaves – round, fluffy and scalloped respectively. Our Christmas-present cima di rapa seeds have made good progress, forming nice rows of radish-like green leaf. Precious midyin berry seeds, that sprouted some weeks ago, are developing their second leaves, with promising signs of thriving. Even the guava seeds, little bullets that we took from that most delicious fruit, are swelling, tiny green bumps appearing on the surface of the soil.

On the other side of the world, in London, my daughter-in-law waits to give birth, my son by her side. I wish birth for her could be as simple as for the guava, with a seed that swells and bursts above the soil into leaves. I hope my son will be as good a companion as the woman who sat by me as I was waiting to give birth to him. We sat and counted the seconds through my contractions, neither of us knowing what we were doing – but what a result!