Root Truth: A Writer Wednesday Post

July 9th, 2014 | Posted by Irene in Essays | Publication News


RootDanceRootDance, photo & all text © Irene O’Garden 2014

 To listen to this post, please click here:Root Truth

Look closely. You can actually see my guilt woven into this nest of roots. It’s been so long since I last repotted my houseplants that a botanical welfare agency was bound to track me down, charge me with neglect and cart them all away.  I did consider giving them to someone more attentive, yet see how this orange clivia offered a blossom of patience and forgiveness, even as she sat atop this perfect root replica of her pot.

So with relief and pleasure, I set to it yesterday.

One gift of physical labor is the embodiment of metaphor. My thoughts from this pot were obvious—dwell on your roots too long, you run in circles and take up all your growing space.

But as I worked with various roots— hairy, lumpy, milky, airy—truth came up my hands.

We associate roots with the stagnant past, but they constantly seek the new—new water, new nourishment, new exchanges.  They are the probing present, which sustains the past. And the future as well.

Every July we think about our family and our nation’s roots. It’s good to remember they need repotting occasionally as well. After all, root is a verb.

Publication News:

Am very proud to say that some of my wedding signs are included in the Style Section of the NY Times this week!



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  • Laura

    Irene and I always seem to be in the same place- I just repotted a struggling, straining orchid who was like me in a size too small skirt…Her image and description are perfect and so poetic. The link to the wedding is exciting — be sure and follow- Irene’s simple yet eloquent signs point the way to what looks like one of the most beautiful and meaningful weddings of the year.

    • IreneOGarden

      My wavelength has definitely brightened with you on it, Laura!

  • mike jurkovic

    wll I just got around to putting the morning glories and a bunch of sunflowers in the ground. . .

    • IreneOGarden

      Happy grounding, dear poet!

  • Mark Rettman

    Thanks again for a great post and congrats for hittng the ” BIG Times ” !

    • IreneOGarden

      Thanks, Mark, and for the good Times we share!

      • Mark Rettman

        😉 … That acknowledhement means much to me.

  • Mark Rettman

    Thanks again for sharing that weekly beauty and happy to hear you hit the ” BIG TIMES” !

  • Scott

    Your “thoughts from pots” are just what I need to take me on a summer journey to nurture my roots.

    • IreneOGarden

      Happy to hear it, since our roots go way back!

  • stacy

    Ha! Root is a verb. Good one. Love the wedding signage!

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