Community Post


This is a memory exercise piece by Molly Hawes, a student of one of our shareholders:

I am young—around six or seven years old—and squishing my bare feet into soil. The sun is setting, the air is cooling, and the mosquitoes are starting to bite at my ankles. My dad pushes a wheelbarrow up the hill and my brother and I follow in his footsteps, paying no mind to the mud that splashes up our shins. Mom doesn’t like us running through the backyard barefoot because there are wasps and garden snakes hidden in the tall grass, but Dad doesn’t care. Dad probably doesn’t even realize that we should be wearing shoes. Dad doesn’t know about a lot of Mom’s rules. My brother and I arrive at the small garden at the top of the hill and pounce on the raspberry bushes. Dad yells. We’re not supposed to eat the berries right off the plants—Mom needs to wash them first. This is an annoying inconvenience; I want raspberries. I put most of them in the paper carton but pop some into my mouth when Dad’s back is turned. He tends to the other plants, the ones deep in the soil—maybe they’re carrots or radishes or potatoes, I don’t know. I’m busy eating. On the way back down the hill to our little house, I pick some mint leaves from the ground for Mom to make tea with. I search for some long-stemmed dandelions so I can make a bouquet and preserve it in a Welch’s jelly glass. I cartwheel in the mud and show up at the front door with raspberry-stained lips and with dirt on my hands, feet, shins, and shoulders. I smell like the earth, I’m covered in mosquito bites, and I have indents on my knees and the heels of my hands from kneeling on clumps of dead grass. Mom doesn’t care as long as I wipe my feet off at the door.


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