Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Sewing Sturdy Seams of Community

--Yesterday afternoon, I watched my spouse bewitch the new sewing machine of a friend who lives nearby.

--O.K., I admit it--he didn't really bewitch it.  He just figured out the way to loop the thread through all the hooks and tunnels of the machine so that the tension would be correct.

--Yes, my spouse, the possessor of a wide variety of power tools, showed our friend how to operate the machine so that she could hem her daughter's school uniforms.

--We took a moment to contemplate the humble sewing machine and all the clothes that the average machine owned by our average grandmothers had sewn.  We marveled over the way that the machine weaves two strands of thread together into a sturdy seam.

--I thought of how I thought we might be spending our time, back last week, when I thought there might be a storm.  I thought we might be sharing our chainsaw, not hemming school uniforms.

--We talked, as we often do, about alternative income streams.  Could one make serious amounts of money by doing minor seamstress tasks like hemming?  Or if not a serious amount, would it be worth the effort?

--I'm thinking about the sewing machine and the seam as a kind of metaphor.  I've been playing with a poem too.

--An earlier poem about community has just been published in this post over at Dave Bonta's wonderful blog, Via Negativa.  He's got a wonderful series, Poets in the Kitchen.  I couldn't resist.  I submitted a piece which includes a poem ("Eucharist"), an essay of sorts that explains how I wrote the poem, and a recipe for lentil soup--plus a picture of a pot of lentil soup made by Dave's mom.

--The photo was serendipity--Dave's mom just happened to be making lentil soup, so he grabbed the opportunity.

--I love that my poem about community and creativity has found a home in a different community.

--Creativity and Community Building--now there's the title for a book!

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