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SPARK » Pippa Possible and Amy Souza

Pippa Possible and Amy Souza

“I Exist”
Pippa Possible

Response

Nasturtiums
By Amy Souza

Inspiration piece

Certainly vines had been creeping forth in the days prior to my noticing, but it was as if the nasturtiums appeared out of nowhere. One day barren earth; the next, lush greenery reaching out onto the patio, bright orange and yellow flowers poking heads toward the sky.

The flowers taste peppery and burn floral essence into nasal passages. This I know is true, though I can’t recall a specific instance when I’ve plucked a flower and placed it on my tongue. Glancing out the window that first early day, I felt a jolt at the sight of them, and then I felt crazy. Had I planted nasturtiums? Watered them? Watched them sprout? I wondered if a secret being hid inside me and snuck out to sow seeds as a message: I exist.

While I sleep the nasturtiums travel, furtive, their tendrils seeking support to climb upon. They find the narrow metal stake that holds up a battered, unused screen porch and claim it for themselves. Now I greet them as I turn on the electric kettle each morning. Water begins to boil and I scan the yard to see how far the stems have traveled. Sometimes they grow a foot in one day.

Meanwhile, the world moves around me. I hear cars in the distance and imagine drivers hurrying to important places. Somewhere close by, a shovel scratches loose rock. The whine of a lawn mower. Aroma of cut grass and gasoline.

I remember that feeling of purpose. Once I had things to do, too. Though not old, I feel archaic and worn. Never know how to go on, how to keep waking up. In the morning, when I do rouse, I often surprise myself by still being here. And yet here I am.

 

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