None of the plants pictured here should have sprouted. Yet they did and seem to be thriving; thistle and mustard plants growing between chunks of rock along the railroad tracks on Lakeville Street and a dandelion growing in the crack between wood and a rock wall.

Jan’s comment on the photos attached to my ‘Hanging Gardens of Petaluma’ post said they show the determination of life. Penny said the plants growing in the rock wall are a living testament to the force of cosmic optimism. To me, people living in the harsh extremes of desert heat, arctic cold or inner city slums is every bit as amazing as seeds sprouting in a rock wall.

When I observe plants growing in the most unlikely of places or read about the living conditions endured by people who live in impoverished countries, I see manifest the flame that burns within all life and how, given the smallest chance, that flame is driven to shine brightly.

With so much sadness and strife in the news it would be easy to grow pessimistic about life. In spite of the problems we face today, I am reminded daily about how good we have it in America. Yesterday I drew inspiration from the simple beauty of a flower. Today I have been inspired by the indomitable spirit of life.