Free the Yarn!
My guest room closet sprouts gift wrap—and this little chest of drawers entirely devoted to bits of fabric and lot and lots and lots of yarn. Yarn that someday will be knotted and knitted into a whole range of clever projects. A major wall-hanging of the river running through the forest in three different panels to hang on a cabin wall (not been built yet) though there is a plot of land by a river. Miles of red thread to warm the necks of soldiers deployed around the world in a contribution to Operation Gratitude (once crocheted—which by the way, I have not crocheted since I was seven). Half-knitted and half-raveled sweaters sort of meet in the middle between neck and midriff. And there is the lovely purple and gold striped long toboggan I put on the head of a nine-year old boy.
I love to knit. I learned this therapy thirty years ago under the tutelage of a few instruction manuals, but mostly by admiring the deft hands of Peruvian women in the upper Andes who carried around bits of sweaters and shawls in process, knitting as they walked. Tiny girls following their mothers used long nails for knitting needles. Some of them twirled spindles as they went about—twisting skeins of alpaca wool into soft threads.
One day sitting in wait in a doctor’s office I was knitting, purling, counting—as best I could—until the woman across from me could no longer stand it. She came over and without a word, grabbed the piece out of my hands and in thirty seconds whipped out three inches worth of perfection. Therapeutic—for her at least.
These days weaving has more to do with websites and social media connections designed to attract the world to my words. There is blue light and a screen involved, and the keyboard does not resemble knitting needles, but I can definitely create knots and snarls.
That chest full of yarn probably needs to go to another home so soldiers can receive gifts while still deployed vs. as grizzled old veterans in the V.A. The epic wall-hanging is already on track for disaster, it probably deserves a mercy killing. And the various sweaters in states of undress can surely serve as padding for something—or just go straight to the recycle bin. Worms need sweaters, right? But. I will keep the toboggan. It is finished after all.
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