Wednesday, May 4, 2011

To Plant An Acorn...

... is to know, in a funny sort of way, what a bird on her nest feels when waiting for her eggs to hatch.

So many parallels.  The same sense of expectancy.  The same constant, gnawing worry and doubt: Is it too cold? Too wet? Too dry? Did I tend the "eggs" properly since I gathered them last fall? Is the "nest" sufficient for the task?  The same impatience.  The same fear of predation.  The same dread certainty that you get one crack at this (so to speak) each year.

And in my case, as my children are fond of telling me, the same large, pointed beak.  And as I am fond of pointing out in return, they each have half my genes, ticking inside them like a little nasal time bomb.

What traits will transfer to my acorns?  Did the large acorned parent beget this trait to the acorns I happened to gather, and that happen to germinate for me?  Which acorns might be hybrids, secretly containing half the genetic code of another "species?"

A watched pot never boils.  I hope to God that watched acorns germinate... because I'll be watching the heck out them!

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