always try and put my garden to bed before the shortened autumn days fall too deep into November. This year I beat the darkness by a few minutes by placing my last clump of leaves and grass cuttings in their rightful place just before the sun was about to depart the clear autumn sky.
With a few quiet minutes left in the day I leaned on my trusty old rake to enjoy the moment. Looking down the worn shaft of the rake I noticed it was missing a few of its spindly fingers. Originally it had been painted a bright green color but after years of pushing leaves and rocks, the green had been replaced almost completely by rust. My wife bought me a new rake a few years back that still hung proudly on a bent nail in the garage.
Retiring my old rake would have made the job of moving dead things off my lawn one hell of a lot easier. The new one had a slick shiny handle that made the wood look like plastic. At least I think it is wood. The blades on this rake were bigger and more flexible because they were made of some bright new plastic that promised never to lose its color. Looking around my yard and home I thought about other parts of my life that had become worn and rusty with time and should have been thrown out years ago but, because they had become such an integral part of my life, I dared not let them go.