And now for something completely different . . .
I’ve spent a great deal of time these past few days thinking about writing. I don’t know that I ever don’t think about writing, but I’ve been meditating on it’s role in my life, the position is plays in my priorities (try saying that three times fast), and how to balance it along with all the other priorities in my life.
Apparently even my subconscious is working on this. My dreams have been vivid lately, but last night’s was particularly interesting. I don’t write about my dreams often – mostly because I find that dreams are very person things, but also because the local writer who hates my guts (lwwhmg) tends to blather on about hers as if she has some amazing connection to the universe.
But when my grandfather shows up in my dreams, I sit up and pay attention – sometimes quite literally.
Last night, in my dream, I was pulling weeds in my back yard. It was tedious, but it needed to be done. As I was digging bind weed out of my raspberries, I began finding hammers – all kinds of different hammers. The first one I found was a claw hammer. Then I found a ball peen hammer. Then I found a tiny craft hammer. I sat back, wiped the sweat from my forehead, and looked at the discoveries wondering why they were in my raspberries.
Then my grandfather’s voice came from behind me. “They’re tools,” he said in his deadpan fashion. I turned to see him, dressed in his familiar beige madras shorts and his white undershirt; the lenses his black framed glasses glinted in the sun.
“Yeah, I know,” I said. “Why are they in my raspberries?”
Grandpa just shrugged. “Why do you think they’re in your raspberries?”
Let me mention here that the whole reason I have raspberry bushes in my yard is because of my grandfather. Some of my favorite memories come from the summer I lived with him in North Carolina. We would get up early in the morning and cross the damp lawn of his back yard to the fence where wild raspberry bushes had found a good place to climb. The berries hung like clusters of rubies just waiting to be claimed. We’d take my grandmother’s avocado green Tupperware bowl that she used to make potato salad in before she died, and we’d stop picking when the bowl was full. I would eat bowls full of these sweet gems, doused in whole milk that turned pink and sweet from the fruit.
“Why hammers?” I asked my grandfather.
“What are you working on?” he asked me.
“Writing,” I said. “I still don’t get the hammers.”
“What are they,” he asked me sitting in his familiar aluminum lawn chair which had somehow appeared without my noticing.
“They’re tools,” I said. “Used for building, pounding nails, or hitting people who annoy,” I said and I could feel the smile even in my sleep.
Grandpa smiled. “Now you’re getting it.”
“But, why so many of them?” I asked. I held up the ball peen hammer next to the little craft hammer. “Why the different sizes?”
My grandfather sipped his coffee, which had also appeared without me noticing. “Why do you think?” he asked.
I was getting a little impatient at this point. “Grandpa, I assume that if I knew these answers you wouldn’t be here pestering me.”
He smiled. “Oh, you never know. Maybe I’m pestering you more than you even know.”
I wouldn’t doubt it.
“You didn’t by chance take my blender, did you?”
My blender actually disappeared sometime in the past few weeks. Kids refuse to take any responsibility. I know it wasn’t me. And hubby claims he didn’t know we had a blender.
Grandpa smiled. “That wasn’t me.”
It seemed I wasn’t going to get a straight answer. Then I noticed the door to my shed was open. I took the hammers I could carry and went to put them away. Inside, next to my lawn mower and the bike with the flat tire and broken chain, there was a peg board with a myriad of tools.
“What is all this?”
“Your tools,” Grandpa said from the lawn chair.
“These aren’t all mine,” I said, and I was worried about where they had come from.
“They’re yours, whether or not you know it.”
“I don’t know what half these things are,” I said.
“But you know how to use them anyway,” Grandpa said as he stood next to me.
And that’s when I woke up.
Yeah – it makes sense now. I have what I need. I know how to use it. I’ll figure out the rest as I go. I felt a lot better after I woke up.