Thursday, March 31, 2011


If of thy mortal goods thou art bereft,
And of thy meager store
Two loaves alone to thee are left,
Sell one and with the dole,
Buy hyacinths to feed thy soul.
                Sheikh Muslih-uddin Saadi Shirazi, circa 1270

My grandfather used to recite this poem.  Every now and then he would ask, "If you only have two loaves, what should you do with them?"  The astute grandchild would chirp, "Buy hyacinths to feed thy soul."  It only took one time to get caught unawares before you learned the poem. 

Last week felt as if we were indeed bereft of everything: one of my uncles is facing a diagnosis that has left us all shell-shocked.  Struggling out of my own fog, I saw the poem on our refrigerator, went to visit the hyacinths blooming in my front yard, and set to work. I can't cure my uncle, but maybe my little hyacinths can be a morsel for his soul.


Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Frankly, my dear...

I am not a fan of Gone With the Wind.  When I was in high school, we had a requirement to read a certain number of books from their approved reading list.  This was early 1980s Alabama, so the list In frustration, I chose Gone With the Wind.  The length of the book (over 1000 pages) was not initially a problem for me because I love to read.  My problem was with Scarlett.  She spent 1000 pages mooning and pining over Ashley.  Ashley, Ashley, Ashley.  Everything she did was so she could get to Ashley.  By about page 100 I had determined that she was foolish, that she was wasting her (and my) time, and that she needed to get over this fixation and move on.  But did that happen? NO!  I read the rest of that book just waiting for Rhett Butler's famous blow-off line.  I looked for it in every scene they had together.  Little did I know that it came on the second to last page.  By that time, I was through with Rhett, too.  I was probably in my 30s before I saw the movie.  Better, but still not a fan.

So a month ago when I was asked if I could make a Scarlett O'Hara-esque doll, my mouth said yes while my brain was screaming "It's Scarlett -- NO!"  Nonetheless, here is the result:

Despite my antipathy, she came out kinda cute.  Better, but still not really a fan...