It's a yearly ritual. Sometime in late October or early November I cut the lawn in both the front and back yards down as low as the blade on the lawn mower will cut. I then aerate the yard with a chunky garden rake and I throw out the rye grass seed and the fertilizer. In no time at all the yard has a fresh carpet of deep green grass and even though I could take a break from yard work if I didn't plant the rye grass, I choose instead to plant.
I performed this yearly ritual two weeks ago and my neighbor wandered out of his home and over into my yard - presumably just to chat. "You aren't planting rye grass, are ya?” he asked. "I sure am!" I responded. "Better you than me" he said shaking his head as if exhausted.
So, why do I plant the rye grass? Is it because I am just vain enough to want my yard to look good all year long? No...that's not it. I've experienced a lot of winters in my life - seasons that have been cold and lonely. In fact, it seems that I've been in a cold and dormant season for a particularly long time. I look for hope, however - small patches of green that tell me even in the winters of life, there can still be growth. The rye grass gives me hope and reminds me that no matter how dark the day is, there is life and there is tomorrow.