Lessons In Lawn Care

The secret about summer in Seattle is that from July 4 to the start of school it doesn’t rain. I did not appreciate this fact until I bought a house that had a lawn that needed taking care of. Suddenly I was like a farmer, pondering the summer sky, wondering if it was time to break out the sprinkler and the hose. I like a green lawn, and I will suffer the water bill to have it so. This was not always the case. In those first years in the house I had acquired a kind of fatalism about the lawn. The spring rains would finally cease, and a mere two weeks of cloudless skies would bake the lawn brown. I was powerless. I had heard of watering your lawn, but who really believed such things actually worked? God had withdrawn his creative waters, and our world must descend into dust and dry grass.

The third summer in our house my family came to visit. It was my sister who, upon seeing the utter desolation of my brown yard, remarked, “Jeez.”

“There’s nothing you can do,” I said. “It just won’t rain.”

“Well, you could try watering it.”

So naïve. And yet to humor her, I dug up a sprinkler and tried her out. I ran it every day during their weeklong visit. I would sit on my back stoop and watch the shower I had summoned. The sun was too hot, the sprinkler too small. But still I watched it. What difference was there between this water and that which fell from the sky? Would it not flow as long as I left the spigot open? I sat and I waited with the patience I had learned at my writing desk.

The day they left I noticed the first green shoots within the carpet of brown. A month later, I wheeled my lawn mower from the shed. Life, it seemed, had been waiting for my attention all along.

If you like the ideas and perspectives expressed here, feel free to contact me about individual and group conferencing.

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You can find Bill at: williamkenower.com

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