Beautiful Bogalusa

Published 8:55 am Wednesday, April 22, 2015

It’s back to our usual springtime routine at the Miller house. Cooking out and enjoying the gorgeous green of the outdoors in the Deep South is such a pleasure, and we love to enjoy a meal on the patio. Just as I’ve heard all my life, “It’s the simple things that give us the most joy.”

Gardening is one of my passions, and every time the earth greens up again my spirit gives a shout. When crocus commence to gently peek their heads through the chilly soil I, as my grandmother before me, envision the design and kaleidoscope of color of the garden. She once poured over seed catalogues even as old man winter howled biskly outside the windows of her drafty old farmhouse. I search online or visit a nursery, but think of Mamaw Wilsie’s love of nature every time I do so.

A mother soon forgets the pain of childbirth as she revels in the joy of the sweet smell of her babies skin, and I forget the heat of the summer past. I forget the weeds. I forget the fight against drought and disease. I only remember the fragrant blossoms of each garden inhabitant. I remember the fabulous chaos of color that brightens the landscape. I remember the satisfaction I always feel at agreeing with God that His world is indeed filled with beauty. In the garden I connect with all that is good, and troubles seem far away.

Along with the intense pleasure at the beautiful things God created I feel intense displeasure at the disrespect some people show by tossing litter along the highways, rivers and streams of our beautiful southern towns and countryside. Mike and I do our little bit in the war on litter by walking down our country road and picking up trash from the ditches. We do this just to see people toss their garbage out again. Before long we collect our bags and gloves and march down the road fighting our own little battle in the trash war. This gets disheartening, and at times we are tempted to give up the fight. But we carry on realizing that the little things we do matter, if only to us.

Some people don’t see the trash. I find this an unusual phenomenon, but it is reality. I have had many conversations with different people over the years about one eyesore or another. Many times the other person looks completely puzzled and replies that they didn’t notice the trash.

Please, look around and take notice. If we all work just a little harder to keep our beautiful area clean, others will perhaps do the same. People want to live and work in a place that is clean and well kept. Businessmen and women want to locate their businesses to communities that maintain high standards of cleanliness.

The people in Bogalusa and surrounding areas have much to be proud of. Let’s showcase what we have to offer by keeping our area pristine and beautiful.

Jan Penton Miller can be reached at