Saturday, August 6, 2022

Portable: Personal Archeology


Personal archeology. July 2022. Credit: Mzuriana
Personal archeology. July 2022. Credit: Mzuriana

In my preparation for moving at the end of August, as per my tradition, I have been consuming consumables so I can lighten my relocation load. 

I had two scented candles. One was small, and I luxuriated in its fragrance for the three or so days of profligate use. 

The next candle was rather large. Honey nectar. An intoxicating perfume that filled my space. To burn it, I sought a suitable surface. 

Ah, I have two pieces of black slate, painted with a flower design. I selected one to place under the candle. 

Now I needed something to put the candle and slate on, which would be out of the breezeways of my ubiquitous fans or open windows. 

Ah, I have my djembe drum. 

I placed the candle on top of the painted slate on top of the djembe drum, on the floor. 

After I did that, and after I lit the candle's two wicks, and after I breathed in the delectable scent, I saw something. 

Each of these items represent past lives. 

The drum I received from a long-time love. I played this drum at the drum circles in El Paso.

The slate I received from one of my two best high school friends, which she had received from a best friend in her old home town; the original gift-giver is who painted the flowers on that slate, and a second one that I also have. Years ago, I gave these two slates to my mother so she could use them on her living room end tables, for people to place their drinks upon. After my mom died, the slates returned to me.

The candle I'd bought to add to the ambience for a nice little interlude with someone just prior to my Lost Summer of 2021

When I saw that tower of memories, it prompted me to add another item. A pair of yellow finches I'd embroidered, for which my husband-at-the-time made the frame, and which I'd also given to my parents at some point, decades ago. I retrieved this, too, after my mother died.


Personal archeology. July 2022. Credit: Mzuriana
Personal archeology. July 2022. Credit: Mzuriana

The year I embroidered the birds was the Year of Massive Domesticity. I learned how to bake bread (before there were bread-making machines), both white and whole wheat (the former a tremendous success; the latter a flat, uber-dense brick, but still tasty). I taught myself how to crochet. I made at least six full-size afghans, each of a different stitch pattern, knot size, and color palette and design. These were all gifts to siblings and parents one Christmas. 

It may come as no surprise that this was also the year I incubated, produced, and fed a baby human. 

That's a lotta history packed into a small space for this minimalist.

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