A Pineapple Seed

My mind goes to unfamiliar places these days, understandably, as these are unfamiliar times, a war of sorts, with ourselves, with each other, with the planet we have abused and ignored. As I cut up pieces of frozen pineapple for my breakfast this morning, I got to thinking.
I watched a documentary on television years ago, so many years ago that I can’t find a number to quantify the passage of time, but what really matters is the image that stuck with me, from then ’til now. The image of a single pineapple seed, caught on a current of air, lifted from Paraguay in southern Brazil on the wing of a bird perhaps, tucked into the bird’s feathers and carried far out to sea, soaring over the ocean and then the seed was released again, to float on the air, suspended as if in flight itself, until it found land, settled down on the rocks of one of the Hawaiian islands, with just enough soil for the seed to call the land home.
Pineapples aren’t indigenous to Hawaii, yet they have long been a symbol of Hawaii. I find that interesting, how something can seem foreign and uneasy at first, but becomes comfortable and familiar and we forget what it was like before it came. None of us are easy with Change; we don’t have a favourite song to dance to, Change knowing to put its steps in the right order to allow us to move effortlessly with it in time to the music. But eventually, Change becomes something else, and if we remembered to notice, we would be surprised. “Ahh, yes, Change,” we would say, nodding in gentle conversation. “I remember you or, at the very least, you seem familiar.”
I read just about everything that Maria Popova has to say in her blog “www.brainpickings.org”. She has, in my estimation and in the estimation of the 1.2 million readers of her blog per month, according to the Guardian in 2012, profound wisdom and celebrates creativity in her blog writing. She refers not only to her own sensibility, but relies on the wisdom of those creative souls who came before, those she admires and puts great stock in. It is as though she has done the hard work for me, the figuring and contemplating, and I can take it in, safe in the knowledge that she thought carefully about her words and puts them out there for each of us to gather in, like a prolific garden we can fill our baskets from, without ever having to pull a weed.
Maria spoke of seeds in a recent blog post. “We make things and seed them into the world, never fully knowing – often never knowing at all – whom they will reach and how they will blossom in other hearts, how their meaning will unfold in contexts we never imagined.”
I write. I sit at my desk, day after day. Sometimes the words come out so fast I can barely get them down and other days it feels like trying to extract water from my kitchen table. But still I write, because I cannot help it. I write to find my way to my own truth, to understanding this strange concoction of cells and love and struggle that we are all a part of. The struggle seems paramount now, unavoidable, frightening, yet at other times it feels quiet and pensive, as if we might use this time to waken, though that won’t be easy.
Possibly everything we create, everything we make from our lives no matter its public importance, that which comes from our “self” is like the pineapple seed, adrift on the air. The plant released its seed with only hope, no guarantees, that it would find its way “home.”

wendistewart@live.ca