It starts as a cosmic thought, really. A mostly unobserved energetic grain of will. Then there is a breaking- a microscopic frenzy of a breaking and nothing can live save for the violence of that original break. Green starts underground, and isn’t green just the perfect color of New? When New needs protecting, earth bears down, resisting only to put survival in the veins so that nothing is broken when it breaks through soil. Next there comes a reach that won’t stop until it sufficiently repays the sun for warmth and life and for having the forethought to position itself 92 million miles away, an overbearing mother if there ever was one.
There is a tension in growth, a static grip on all things dynamic. It’s true of plants and children and mothers. When child, with achy legs from growing bones complains of pain, there isn’t a thing in the world to do but rejoice that today he is locked in the struggle of the reach. When tomorrow, the pain comes from an ugly word, not true at the core but gospel in the schoolyard, you reveal the word for what it is-a bearing down for the protection of growth. Without tension, nothing grows.
If I sometimes shrink from growth, too tired to entertain the ache that accompanies it, who can blame me? Live long enough and a person learns some things. Like, I know that my kids orbit me for warmth and life and for that perfect positioning, just near enough to catch or let fall. Yet, when every effort is focused on child growing there is this thing that happens, this spinning off balance thing, where mother has given all and cannot shoulder the burden of that gentle bearing down. A child needs growth in a mother just as seedlings need that sustainable warmth from the sun. Life sustains life and so it goes that when mother thrives, her children turn faces up to receive that solar gift.