At our spring equinox celebration, one of the women gave everyone a little clay dish. We didn’t know what was going to be put into it, until after a mysterious box was passed around.
It was dark inside the box, and there was little to be seen. But we were asked to listen. A mysterious sound came out of the darkness. a kind of rasping, munching sound, like something being turned over.
What was being turned over was the black soil, being munched and processed by dozens of tiny worms. Did you know that worms can be heard having their dinner?
Maori tohunga (priests) used to put their ears to the ground in spring to listen to the worms awakening.
We all took a scoop of the rich worm compost to fill the little clay cups. Then we were given tiny, almost invisible seeds to sprinkle into the soil, followed by a little pour of water.
All the ingredients for growth are present. The clay will naturally dissolve into the soil, and the well-nourished seeds are free to sprout, raise their heads, and one day, to flower.
But will they?
The amaryllis, which has hidden in a seemingly empty pot for the last ten months, has suddenly shot up into the light. The jade plant has turned golden. The snapdragons are breaking out into glorious colour. In this season, anything is possible. I will expect red poppies one day.