The last crops of the summer season--the corn, sunflowers, beans, the gourds and squash--give that final, valiant push for the harvest. Their energy singularly focused on the purpose of their labor and existence.
They are literally killing themselves for the sake of the fruit. The seed.
A month ago this patch stood tall and green, and we all watched it with an inspired sense of it's potential. Now, with the change of the season, that potential is realized in a bounty of crops, but the garden herself...
She's mangled. She's spent. Sunflowers bow low beneath the weight of their massive heads. Squash vines march across the lawn as if lost and wandering. She's a wreck.
I find myself empathetic with this active passing. One corn stalk now grows vertical to the ground, the last ear of corn nearly ready. I whisper, You are so close. Don't give up now.
The sunflowers are propped up on bits of fence and random garden objects. One now leans solidly on a neighboring tree. Where would they be without the things that literally keep their faces out of the mud? I know how you feel, I tell them.
I want to high five that garden every time I walk past her. I speak to her tenderly because I know she needs that right now. I do what I can to help her keep going until her work is finished.
And when it's over--when the last of her harvest is plucked and gone--she will stop.
She will lay herself down in the soil. and rest.