Heirloom Seeds

Heirloom Seeds

I found the baby-food jar in a drawer
at my grandma’s house. “What’s this?” I asked. sprout
“It was my mother’s,” said Grandma. “She liked
to collect seeds.” “Seeds? Flower seeds?” “No, not
all, just different kinds of seeds.” She took the
jar and turned it from side to side. It was
true; there were hundreds of seeds of different
sizes, shapes, colors. “What would happen if
I plant them? “Oh, they’re probably too old
to take root.” I saw she was reluctant
to part with the seeds. But she looked at my
eager face and smiled, handing me the jar.
“Oh well. I don’t know. Let’s give it a try.”

So that spring I planted all of the seeds.
The tiny ones I planted shallowly,sprouts
and the larger ones I planted deeper.
And Grandma was right, most of them didn’t
grow. I fretted and worried over too
much sun or rain. I lay on the grass next
to them, hoping, most every day. Until
one morning, I saw the first tentative
sprout wave a fine finger above the earth.

I dashed inside, yelling, jubilant. “Come
see! Come see!” Grandma came, but she shook her
head. “That looks like a weed to me.” she said.
“But if it was in the jar, it might be
something nice!” So we waited. I learned to
identify the different plants by their
leaves at first, and then, as the flowers bloomed,
we learned if we were right or wrong. Some of
the plants weren’t flowers at all. There were
some herbs, thyme and rosemary and basil.
There were two trees, one lemon and one
apple. There was cantaloupe, blackberry,
strawberry and tomato. And it was
all randomly planted, grown together.

Summer’s end found us collecting the seeds
so we could plant them again next year. I
was surprised to see a tear in Grandma’s eye.
“My mother would have just loved this,” she said.

Integrated_garden

Written for Quickly‘s prompt.

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2 thoughts on “Heirloom Seeds

  1. Diana,
    I believe I have now read everything you wrote in April. Congratulations. I’ve always liked your poetry and prose. This month I felt you grow as an artist. I wanted to wait until the month was over before I commented. I love this piece, a lot! There are many more lingering in my head and heart.
    As soon as I can, I’d like to mark my faves with a ❤
    Once again, well done! and Thank you!

  2. Oh dear, that must’ve been quite a chore! I had decided to take two prompt challenges in April and discovered there was quite a lot I could learn. Miz Quickly, whose prompts were the newest challenge were very, well, challenging. And the prompt I learned the most from was to read other poets and find a new favorite. I traipsed over to Poetry.org, I believe, and started reading random poets. I found one I liked very, very much. Miz Quickly had us then dissect a favorite into columns of nouns, verbs, adjectives, etc. Then to do the same to one of a similar length of our own. That exercise alone taught me so much! It focused my mind towards better description and fewer words. And the poet I chose? Ted Kooser, the Poet Laureate of the U.S. So yeah, of COURSE I like his work. LOL (I didn’t know who he was til I was already done with the exercise…)

    Thank you, Resa. You are a kind friend! 🙂 ❤

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