When making a quilt, there are always little leftovers, scraps of fabric too small to do anything with, but too colorful to throw away. True also when I’m writing my blog. Here are a few scraps.
I needed a quick centerpiece for my table one day, so I cut some English ivy from my deck and stuck it in a pretty bowl of water. Added a lovely touch to my setting.
Several days later, I went to throw it out and noticed roots, tiny delicate white threads already drawing nurture from the water. I planted it and put it in a sunny window.
I’ve kept it as an object lesson, a daily reminder to keep putting out roots to draw sustenance from my surroundings whatever they are, to keep living and flourishing like the garden ivy.
His name was Oscar, and he’d come to prepare the yard for grass. He was from “Salvador” and his English was “small.” I shrugged my shoulders and told him my Spanish was “pocito.” He laughed.
He worked hard for two days, until the soil which hadn’t been tilled for 20 years, was as fine as powder, the seed was sown, and a topping in place.
When he left, he told me he’d worked hard and traveled long to come to this country, that he had a Green Card, and was going to night school in order to become a citizen. He pointed to his head. “America was here since I was small boy. In here, I can always see America.”
I wasn’t surprised. When my granddaughter Chelsea was four, she told me that in New York City she had seen a big, big lady who held a magic light in her hand. “You can see it all over the world,” she said. Oscar saw it in El Salvador.
A friend gave me an herb garden and I killed it. I didn’t mean to, but it died just the same. I tossed the last plant out today.
Seems I killed them with kindness—over-watered and over-fed them. There’s a lesson in there, I just know it, but I’m not going to pursue it today. There’s a package of butter toffee in the kitchen. Waste not—want not.
P.S. Kirkus Review has given my book Suicide: Living With the Question a good review. Here’s the link: