Eating Light

Hi M,

Let me introduce a few new friends living in my room:

basil_OK
This is OK, from Ocimum, the genus, and king, which supposedly is what basilicum means.

He has been with me for about a month now, already gave me basil pesto, and changes every day, it’s extraordinary. A few days of lower temperatures made his leaves go all grey, so I took him in for now.

According to the ethnobotanist Timothy Plowman, “When you say the names of the plants, you say the names of the gods.” Turns out that my memory is having a hard time with the names of the gods, but you live and learn. In the same chapter of One River, Plowman expressed his doubts about the studies of plants responding to music and human voices: “Why would a plant give a shit about Mozart? And even if it did, why should that impress us? I mean, they can eat light. Isn’t that enough?”

We have some peppermint (Mentha piperita) growing beside our house. I hung some up to dry without giving the arrangement much thought, but when a friend came over she asked me what I had a voodoo plant for? She was right – it does kind of look like this mint if striding confidently to the opposite wall.
We have some peppermint (Mentha piperita) growing beside our house. I hung some up to dry without giving the arrangement much thought, but when a friend came over she asked me what I had a voodoo plant for? She was right – it does kind of look like this mint is striding confidently to the opposite wall.
Finally, this is my little Mohawk corn doll, which we made of white corn in the Aboriginal Student Centre. Clearly I wasn’t very creative about it, other exchange students dressed their dolls all up in bikinis or Star Wars costumes. Still, I like her.
Finally, this is my little Mohawk corn doll, which we made of white corn in the Aboriginal Student Centre. Clearly I wasn’t very creative about it, other exchange students dressed their dolls all up in bikinis or Star Wars costumes. Still, I like her.

Corn (Zea mays) is one of the Three Sisters, i.e. the three main agricultural crops of some Native American groups, also including winder squash (Cucurbita) and climbing beans (Phaseolus acutifolius or vulgaris). There’s an intricate story of why the corn doll has no face, but story-telling isn’t traditionally done in writing, so I couldn’t do it justice here.

Professor E shared a wonderful, anonymous quote with us during the first week of lectures:

“Humankind, despite its artistic abilities, sophistication and accomplishments, owes its existence to a six-inch layer of farmable soil—and the fact that it rains!” – I wonder whether he too got it from the World of Hope! website.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s