Sunday, June 15, 2014

Fear of cherries

A warm morning mist wrapped around me as I ambled to school this past Tuesday, and the trees looked, well, relaxed as their branches drooped from the weight of the water on their leaves.

I have spent years now walking under a cluster of cherry trees along Liberty Avenue, and for years they have behaved like cherry trees, and I have behaved like a mammal. A few days a year, they grace me with breakfast. As I spat out one of the last pits, I noticed my hands dripped with blood. For a moment I thought it was mine.

Image via. MrWallpaper

I share these stories with my students because many, perhaps most, of my students no longer know their connection to the earth, are afraid of what's real, and trust strangers more than themselves.
      Because they are delicious.

How do you know they're safe?
      Because I know cherries--you can, too

Isn't that stealing?
      I leave enough for the birds, and no one else eats them. No one complains when I  eat dandelions. Cherries are made from your borrowed breath and the rain.

With every breath out, we return what we take.
That's not religion.
That's biology.

 Few among us today believe this. It's true despite our ignorance.


Susan Eckert said...

People look for meaning/purpose, a way to make sense out of a world that is difficult to grasp, that is full of both beauty and pain that can overwhelm.

I find my meaning in learning how the world works. (I guess you'd call that science.)

It doesn't matter if you're devout, atheist, agnostic, practicing, what holy book you read or don't or what part of the world you were born in...
With every breath out, we return what we take is truth. And it's beautiful.

John Spencer said...

I think I've shared this story before, but your post reminded me of this:

I went with Micah's class on a field trip to a nearby farm. Micah grabbed a carrot out of the ground, spit on the dirt and rubbed it clean with his shirt. Given the fact that they didn't use pesticides, I didn't say anything.

Later, when they were picking their produce, I watched kids who were horrified about eating this food. "It came from the ground. It was dirty. Even if you wash it, it came from the ground."

We've lost something .

doyle said...

Dear Susan,

Some days I'm hard pressed to tell the difference between pure science and pure religion.

Thanks for sharing your thoughts. =)

Dear John,

I got to meet this Micah character and his parents! Imagine that, we're made of dust. =)