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The old gardener kneels on the soft earth, feeling the velvet leaves, placing those leaves in proper worth. Never startled by rustlings in the grass, he knows the slow slither of snake from the anonymous stir of mouse and tells the time of summer by the hum of cicada, katydid and cricket, by the locust's bold and booming drum. The ancient sunlight warms him, the spry joy of life is in his bones and its color swims in his hungry eye.

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