When my son first learnt about plants growing out of seeds, he was really excited. Our next Sunday afternoon ramble focused on seeds – he collected dozens of them, and we spend a few pleasant moments sorting out the seeds from the non-seeds. He was impatient to get home, and plant them, and it was all I could do to give them the customary soak for thirty minutes before he took them out of the water and carefully planted them in the pot I gave him.
Half an hour late, he was back, “Mamma, can I see the plant yet?”
He most reluctantly accepted my statement that it would take a little bit longer for the plant to come out, and one hour later, was back again. By the time the seeds started germinating, he had all but forgotten about them, and he did not track the growth of the plants with anywhere close to the enthusiasm as he would have displayed had they grown in ‘fast forward’ mode.
But seeds require time to germinate and grow, and plants need a gestation period before they flower and produce seeds of their own. Every gardener knows that, and accepting that is key to effective gardening.
Yesterday evening, my group of writer friends heard from an Art Gallery that we have been talking to for the last few months – the Gallery is going to display our Drabbles alongside the paintings that inspired them as a part of their autumn-winter display. The details were thrilling – they are going to unveil their new collection of paintings as a part of the celebrations to commemorate the switching on of Christmas lights in Cardiff town, and our Drabbles are going to be the cornerstone of their display. As I read the details – press releases, radio coverage, podcasts of authors reading out their works – I could barely conceal my excitement. This was what we have been dreaming of for years. To have it actually fructify into something tangible is almost unbelievable.
I wrote my first painting inspired short story when I was expecting my younger son. As a group we have been trying to sell this idea for over eighteen months now. We had hit upon the drabble format nearly six months back, and have been speaking to the Gallery we would now we working with since Summer. All this time, we hoped and dreamt it would lead to something, but somehow did not believe in that dream till it actually materialized.
Now, while we are talking websites, and logos and selection of the drabbles to be displayed, and whether or not we should include author pictures in the website, the sense of unreality has not totally left us.
The seed we planted all those months back is finally growing into a plant. Whether it actually bears fruits and produces seeds, or remains decorative remains to be seen. But the excitement is no less.
Life is a garden. You plant seeds, water them, tend to them, and essentially forget about them. If you are lucky, and shoots appear, and then fruits and seeds. If not, there are other seeds that you have planted in the garden, and you had fun gathering the seeds and planting them too.