Simple Gifts

Eden on Two Acres, by Last Light: Day Twenty-Five

(Sometimes it’s tough to feel at home in your own city.  Which is why I’ve given myself a challenge:  each day, for forty days, I’m going to find *one* thing I love about this place.  And then I’m going to tell you about it.  If you want to follow my journey, start here.  Today is Day Twenty-Five.)

I discovered the Community Arboretum almost by accident this week, tucked into a little two-acre corner of Virginia Western Community College just off Colonial Ave.

It was the little, circular grove of bare trees that caught my eye — their bark exfoliating into rough brown lace.  I found the place when the light was dying into dark, the last of it catching in the tops of the branches. Fading by the minute.

And it’s remarkable, what intentionality does.  The way a thoughtful design can fold so much loveliness into such a small parcel of green.  There’s a little evergreen maze here.  A shade garden.  A children’s garden.  A greenhouse with glass panels that wink in the sun.  Vines twist in muscular tangles around the arbor, and park benches sit in little pools of flickering leaf-shadow.

This place makes much of little — so I did the same.

I stayed until the light was gone from the sky.

Until it had settled inside me.

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