The Garden

Created by Robyn Leonard, The Pitch 2022

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A solitary garden with an unearthed conscious sits across the moorland; mistreated by its unkind landowner, Ethan. With eyes for money, Ethan hires a gardener, Adele, to transform it into something more desirable within days. Across three days, the Garden receives unbroken attention from Adele. As result, the Garden trustingly reveals its real nature to Adele, such as surrounding her tools in a shrine of wildflowers she knows she certainly did not plant. Wishing for Adele to buy the land, the Garden seeks to help her afford the property by discovering treasure buried within its layers, using roots for arms. After creaks of conversation and gifts from the dirt, a unique alliance forms. The alliance becomes threatened when Ethan grows suspicious of theft by Adele, having noticed the treasures appear. Alone and watching over a bonfire, Adele receives her final gift from the Garden, an unopened chest. The event draws Ethan out of his house, hostilely spewing accusations of theft towards Adele. The impulse causes Adele to take a fall, hitting her head. When it dawns on Ethan and the Garden that Adele has passed, the Garden, in grief, pulls her into the earth and unites her with the rest of the unearthed treasures.

Biblical Connection

The Garden is a small, bizarre story encompassed by Isaiah 24 ‘The Lord’s Devastation of the Earth’. Discovering the verse, I found it uncanny, reflecting today’s conditions despite the time it was written. ‘The earth dries up and withers’, ‘Therefore earth’s inhabitants are burned up’, though unlikely to predict today’s crisis, I strongly believe the words can be revived to underline how our earth, whether it be climate or punishment, is indefinitely on the verge of devastation. Line five, ‘The earth is defiled by its people; they have disobeyed the laws, violated the statuses’ is represented by Ethan who is greedy, careless, and wants to bleed money from the land. ‘The earth is broken up, the earth is split asunder’ has influenced visuals in my story by splitting the earth and seeing the depth of the Garden in all its metaphorical layers and history, developing it as a character. Influenced by films like The Wailing, my story has no winners: ‘it will be the same for priest as for people… for seller as for buyer’, Adele, the gardener, does not have her aspirations resolved. Her labours are cut by the unloving choices of another, and so the same will go for our land.