Tuesday, November 13, 2012

magic in it

You don't speak of November and early potatoes in the same breath.
Not usually.
This year as summer faded, my husband in an act of defiance or optimism, planted  four potato plants.
He hoped to beat the clock.
The seasonal clock.
Summer hours shortened into the crisp golden afternoons of Autumn.
Leaves fell.
Rain fell too.
Yesterday, a bell tolled for the potato plants and my husband took up glove and spade.
I was presented with an aluminum colander full of new potatoes.
Yukon Gold.
Some were as small as marbles but most were golf ball size.
It was when I placed them in the sink and began to wash them that the magic happened.
The pungent scent of fresh garden earth enveloped me and I was transported to my grandparent's root cellar; that dark, rich, earthy place.
For a sweet moment, I could see the heavy door, the bins of vegetables found by Braille.
That dark, dark place so richly scented.
I was always a little afraid that the door would swing closed and leave me to sprout slowly in the dark, a pale little shoot seeking light.
My practical mother always reminded me that someone would look for me. I would be missed. That sense of being missed never comforted. I missed the point I think.
Still, the fragrance of fresh garden dirt is one of my very favourite. There is magic in it.

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