The Backyard Parables: Lessons on Gardening, and Life – Margaret Roach (2013, Grand Central Publishing, New York)
If you’ve ever checked out Margaret Roach’s blog, you immediately get a sense of her delightful humour, her skill at gardening and writing, and her insight into the gifts of living. The Backyard Parables is a beautifully rendered collection of reflections on a year in the author’s garden and in her life – all bones laid bare, all the delicate moments shared. As she writes in the preface “What is a Parable?”:
If I am an evangelist for anything, it is for harvesting the something more in every season spent sowing, tilling, weeding, and hopefully reaping. Gardening is not outdoor decorating. Do tackle the philosophical equivalent of double-digging every time you step outside; please do. Frankly, this other level is the best part, and it’s also where I derive my basic approach to gardening, a style I call ‘horticultural how-to and woo-woo.’ Even the worst weather can’t trash the something more – in fact, adversity can foster a bumper crop of it.
Even if you’re not a gardener, you’ll find something that speaks to you in The Backyard Parables. I urge you to go find it.