These Are My Words

These Are My Words

I worked my way through the raised bed, swirling compost with soil until the overall effect resembled fudge-marble ice cream.  The original idea was to use my trowel on hands and knees, but just minutes in and the obvious revealed itself to me:  I love to run my fingers through dirt; to temper the loamy earth with my very own hands.  Like reading the story of my life - past, present and future by braille, only this story's words are formed by clumps of small pebbles mixed with crunchy wintered soil, held together with a long held breath of dampness caught between my fingertips where I roll this rich brown-black earth back and forth until it begins to fall like fine dust, back into the bed, back to where I lay my worries to rest and form the words of my dreams.

Theo and Sully are just a few feet away, busy - very, very busy with work of their own.  They are working together to dig a hole and after it is dug they will fill it with water.  It is a wild mess, but I am quick to remind myself of who it is that encourages this wondrous play.  I remember with fondness my early childhood days; my mud bakery.  The cookies and cakes and pies I would sling out with a tattered wooden spoon and rusty tin pie plates, garnishes of hibiscus and a speedy-slow collection of rolly pollies my customers.

The hole is now filled with water.  Mud is made.  I listen as one claims to be churning butter and another exclaims these will be the best cupcakes ever!  And then a robin comes to a swift landing on the fence just above their heads, wisps of silken thread shimmering in the sunlight - the boys' hair and her feathers.  She is still and curious from where she rests on her perch.  Just then, right then, absolutely everything was right in my world.  

And just as everything in that moment was perfection, the next moment was yang.  Then Sully began yelling and crying.  Mud was flung into his butter.  Theo yells back that he was only "seasoning" it.  Above, rust wings aflutter as mud flies and unkind words drop like bird shit all over the glorious sun-baked cupcakes and golden cream.

In mayhem's midst, I unfold from my hands and knees, one vertebrae at a time until I am standing tall and adjust my role as mud shop's peacekeeper.  Roles and words righted.  Feelings patched with warm, wet earth.  We resume.

I fold myself back to my hands and knees this time rolling words one at a time as I turn my focus back to the raised bed, the dirt.

Thinking.  Plotting.  Dreaming.  Compromising.  Guiding.  Digging.  Planting.  Loving.  Perfectly imperfect.

These are my words.

{revised from the original essay My Words on Mama May I in the spring of 2012}

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