Miracles were daily; abundant. The little things, which are taken for granted in the metropolis that I now call home, are what people shout about, what people Facebook about. Amazement and wonder at the ability of humans to create and innovate were commonplace because the spirit of creativity, God's spirit to make a way out of no way, breathed life into that earth, invigorating it and sowing up gifts and talents that I had the privilege to witness.
Things like playing:
"Rosle", the Haitian equivalent of jacks, using goat bone knee caps instead of packaged ball and plastic x.
Poking a hole out of a mango to now create a natural Popsicle that allows you to suck the sweet nectar without dirtying your shirt,
The bottle and can openers made of machetes, old knives or even jaws clenched and snapping up tops.
Those are the images of innovation and creativity that till this day never cease to amaze me. Those are the my anchors.
From the outside looking in these roots might seem depleted, making toys out of food scraps, or making a note worthy event out of a walk around the block and calling it “promenade”, but for me these have been a testament to the qualities that I cherish the most about the island that sustained my young life. My root caps pierce deep, the barren top soil forcing them to gravitate further into the earth to find nourishment, where others see death and despair my roots find life. It's the flexibility of these roots to bend and twist with the terrain, to deep further than others, that has made me who I am. A season of drought does not rattle these roots for they know where the last droplet of rain is hidden and where the secret waters reside, they will sustain me until the floodgates open again.
There is water there, deep beneath the surface, between the crevices and cracks of the thirsty earth. There is strength. A secret treasure lies there that only a few find and even less cherish. Once you look past the surface and start to see what these roots have latched on to for life, one notices that that roots enriched by that soil have no other choice but to intertwine and connect with the roots of others; others who are there as well searching for life. It becomes roots on top of roots. One root begins to weave into another, networking and interdependently existing, creating a nest that cradles life.
This is my mother. I am her daughter.