The people I know say bad things about lawns.
They know about monoculture and monotony and suburbs.
They defend the dandelion and they weep for the weed
and dream blindly of how better times used to be.
But when I was ripping up grass in my back yard
to make room for a garden,
I put aches in every part of my back from the strain of unearthing the carpet
of earth-woven roots and green fibers. I pardoned the worms near the blade of my hoe, as they sprinkled the dark soil beneath me, and contemplated the sheer magnitude of life that I had to work so hard to eliminate.
I had to wonder if it was all a mistake- would my produce produce all the green it displaced?
Would I raze it into a barren blank space? And what is so wrong with my lawn?
If every plastic loving person in every sterile home in every cul de sac surrounded themselves with a moat of pure oxygen
they could do a lot worse. Even if they did it by accident, they could do a lot worse.
I will try valiantly to evolve beyond mere mowing to cultivate a space that nourishes my home and myself.
But if I started too late, or give up next year, if I learn that what I discarded was better than what I replaced it with,
then I’m the one who bad things should be said of.
Of all the problems with my culture, it is not lawns I am most worried about.
It is people like me who know so much about what is wrong and so little about what to do about it.