Monday, September 10, 2012

Octavia Bit Into the Apple

Octavia bit into the apple.

Its core of ancient seeds peered out at her.                        

We are here, they whispered.

Eat us or bury us;

either way, we live on 

to nurture you as ancestor.

Be both alive and dead

no matter what.

We survive eternally

here and there.

All possible futures 

exist now.

I let out a small gasp upon hearing this poem read by my friend, Barb Finkelman. She & I were attending a Writing/Riding workshop at the Vee Bar Ranch in Laramie, Wyoming. We were riding the seasoned horses, steadily bringing up the rear, quiet in our observations, completely present for the next sensory experience...the sound of hoofbeats, the swish of a low flying eagle's wings, the running water of a clear creek.

Back at the ranch, Barb read Octavia. A streak of recognition swept over me; the perception that we survive eternally, in alternate forms, struck me as true. The acknowledgement of all possibilities existing simultaneously connecting all possible worlds throughout time was a thought entitled to my consideration.

My mind stretched further. What is the connective tissue that binds us inexorably to our ancestors, and to those beings yet to come? 

Is the answer found in simple apple seeds? I thought: If one were to create in science an apple seed that exactly matches a natural apple seed in structure, appearance, and elemental properties, how would they be different? 

Perhaps the answer is this: Upon planting both seeds, only the natural seed would sprout and grow because it is infused with a life force that science cannot re-create (yet).  This life force may be God, it may be spirit, it may be what is known as soul, it may simply be cosmic energy that binds together near and distant universes. This is the great mystery.

The re-created seed is dead until infused with the invisible energy of the life force. 

And then another thought came. A concrete, down-to-earth observation. When I was a kid, my mom used to eat the whole apple, seeds and all. I thought this peculiar.

She didn't explain why, but my metaphor for this action came to be: East the whole sweet apple; bitter seeds and all. Allow all experiences to penetrate our lives, whether deemed good or bad, for they all serve to convey and shape our fundamental and all-encompassing, wholeness. 

Thank you, Mother, for planting this thought.
Thank you, Aevea, for this compelling poem.

Your spirited reactions to Octavia are welcomed here.

*Poem by Barb Moder Finkelman (Aevea); written at the VeeBar Ranch, Laramie, Wyoming June 2012.


  1. Monica,

    I loved the opening poem and enjoyed your post as I always do; however, I remember reading that apple seeds actaully contain a cyanide compound and are toxic if you eat a significant amount. I don't know exactly what amount would be dangerous, but I avoid eating the seeds of apples to be on the safe side.

    -Natylie in California

  2. How interesting. I don't eat the seeds, but still eat an apple a day, the wise old remedy for good health!

  3. Another thought: this poem reminded me of Walt Whitman's, Song of Myself, where he says:

    "I bequeath myself to the dirt to grow from the grass I love,
    If you want me again look for me under your boot-soles."

    Like the ancient seeds of the apple, we churn through subsequent lifetimes.
    If you want me again...look for me under your boot-soles.