I wish for a Castle at the Butchart Garden

I wish for a castle at the Butchart Garden*

I wish for a castle at the Butchart Garden
With a telescope on the hill
In the sunken garden
To get fragrances from below
While I look up to the stars
And admire the creator
For the beautiful universe
We live in

I might even see
The angels bring gardeners
From that Place Above
To take back hints
For The Big Garden Above

With a breakfast room overlooking
The rainbow fountains
And the ‘swimming pool’ with
Lotus all around
And for a pre-lunch walk
I will go through
Jennie’s rose garden
Where the fragrant roses
Are prettiest of them all
And where some claim
They have heard
Jennie’s whispers
“Grow, roses grow”

I wish to admire
The Japanese garden
With a seat far above
In the tiered dog-wood tree
With sushi and saki
And view of the Todd inlet

And then after dinner
I wish to study
The meaning of the stars above
With models of the big bang
Displayed in the fire-works at night

It is wonderful to know
That Robert supported
Jennie’s interest and vision
And entrepreneurship
With a project which may be called
A beacon for the environment

There are abandoned quarries
In Canada and overseas
Which sit around as eye-sores
Waiting for someone
With Jennie’s vision and Robert’s support
For conversion into
Sites of beauty and fragrance

It is a huge tourist attraction
With Butterfly Garden on the way
With a sensitive nose
One can smell wines nearby

Some day the road would be wider
With Victoria’s own hanging baskets
On the electric poles
And with other tourist attractions
Gourmet restaurants, golf, hotels and motels
Without any new eye-sores
Adding beauty to the drive
To the one and only
The Butchart Garden
At the end of the Road

Millions come to the Garden
To see, to admire, and to pollinate
And the Garden keeps looking great

McDonald compares1 the Butchart Garden
With the Longwood Garden
Established by du Pont
Near Philadelphia
One gets the message
From McDonald’s comparison
That Longwood got du Pont’s money
But Butchart got the Rose!

Reporters1 know that charities
Are quietly supported
By the Butchart family
Who do not give out details
Nor claim any bragging rights
This reminds one
Of a saying half-a-world away
That one should do good deeds
Just for the sake of doing good deeds

Hope nurseries and gardeners around
Will follow the Butchart leadership
In making gardening ‘organic’
And show to the World
It can be done
That would be a fitting tribute
To Jennie’s initiative
A century ago
Of improving the environment!

Let me end by saying
That I only wish for a Castle
At the Butchart Garden
In my dreams
The Garden is too beautiful
As it is
To make room
For anything else

* Katherine Dedyna, “Legacy in full bloom”, Times Colonist (2004 March 7).