Thursday, May 28, 2009

sunday scribblings~language


The house is quiet, no clock ticks, the cat sleeps silently on the back of the sofa she sits on, focused on learning her new hobby. At her feet is a bag of varied colour yarns, with a few sets of different sized knitting needles extending from the middle of the rainbow maze. She glances to her right, to the "Expert" pattern she's creating, moving her lips over phrases that are new to her, the words contained within presenting as gibberish to her brain. This still new process has become the language of her life.

Scarves are created when her mind is occupied with complex ideas, thoughts, emotions.... the easy casting on and following rows of simple stitches, no pattern...the size of the needles and the weight of the yarn determining the beauty of the product. It allows her to have a sense of accomplishment--far more than just sitting would do. She works out the issues found in those ideas, the thoughts and release the emotions, letting her continue her life without being overwhelmed. She gives these to loved ones, smoothing over the finished work, pleased the weave will keep warmth in and let the owner's breath out, doing the job they were meant to do.

It is later, when she moves on to patterns that read like Hebrew, containing stitches with complicated names like Andalusian and Brioche and Lily of the Valley Cable--beneath the name are complex instructions--P2to, SSK, PFB,Mbob, M1p--each abbreviation relates to what seems to be a complex move to be made with two pieces of bamboo...Pearl 2, toggle over? Make a bobble, K1,P1,K1,P1 to create a bobble. Here is where she creates what she calls her knitting wrinkle, between her eyebrows. Concentrating on the instructions, watching for the dreaded Double Point Needle to appear, all of the jumbled phrases slowly working their way into her memory, into her fingers...slowly they make sense. When they do, she moves on to another complex pattern, so that she has to focus entirely on the work.

These are the pieces she makes when she can't bear to think, when life wraps itself around her soul and mind and memory, knitting it's own complex pattern, not allowing warmth to enter nor her breath to be let out... it is then she bends all of herself to the language contained in those patterns, focusing on what is being made, each stitch, no matter now perfect it becomes...reminders of the days she is swallowed up by the main language of her life. These pieces are given away to charities and shelters and to people she doesn't know very well.

In doing so, she gives away those hours of supressed pain and sorrow, allowing her to re-focus, and to open up the bag, take the needles, and again make a simple scarf.

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