Our light rail line from the southern burbs to Downtown is a dreary scene for most of its expanse. Built along an existing rail line through an industrial corridor long long in the tooth, the only greenery found is the errant tumble weed or small oasis of rail station trees.
I long for the calming beauty of my old commute along the foothills. There was an abundance of native grasses whose spring greens enlivened and fall ochres soothed. The blue flax flourishes in spring, and blanket flowers in summer mingle with low scrub oak turning to pine further up the steep sided hills. Along one point a small reservoir breaks the scenery with its serene reflection of the blue and sometimes pink morning sky.
But now, looking at my close in view all I see is barren gray and beige warehouse walls scarred with the violent scrawl of gang graffiti. Chain link fence surrounds hap-hazard storage areas of all types of machinery, parts, and materials. Here and there you see the campsites of the homeless tucked into corners of the long forgotten building or empty yard.
I’ve been picturing how nice it would be to see some trumpet vine or hardy honeysuckle climb the ragged chain link fencing. I imagine long lines of tall grasses standing as sentries around the homeless camps. In the abandoned fields a frenzy of poppies. Could I become a guerrilla gardener?