Thursday morning my assistant says, "someone stumped on our zinnia." The only zinnia we got this year.
I head out into the drizzle and see much damage, but not death, then I notice the marigolds, the asters, the salvia, the ten sunflower leaves littered onto the ground.
the snapdragon a student had so wanted to plant, cared for all winter, finally convinced to risk putting it out into the world, trampled and tugged upon.
Four students and I weed and clean up the flower garden and we find more damage. The Cardinalis breaks my heart wide open. Cuttings from what turned out to be a perennial that lacked longevity. We got them rooted and kept them functioning all winter. Then just this week some red creeps out from the nearly closed buds. Every branch with a bud is on the ground, detached from the base of the plant. We speak of anger and sadness.
Today a staff comes by to say the angry student had once again visited my garden. A geranium planted by seed, one of the runts ... not like the ones that flowered and were sold... looked so funny when planted, bounced into fullness and bloom... has been ripped out of the ground.
I cut off most of the foliage and replant it into a pot.
driving home I am thinking of these plants and their stories when I think of what some friends have lost this year, husbands and sons. I try to imagine, again.