Sunday, October 18, 2009

Jump Shot

Speaking of seed pods, falling glances, and the simple act of paying attention, today's ordinary walk past the basketball goal in the driveway enroute to the backyard for my hour of observation revealed a phenomenon so arresting, I never did make it to the swing.

Half-way up the pole of the basketball goal, sprouting from the place where the top extension of the pole telescopes out of the bottom, were the unmistakable seed-leaves of three tiny new impatiens plants. I have often marveled at the spring action of impatiens seed pods, powerful enough to turn themselves inside out, and in so doing project the interior seeds high into the air. I've introduced many children and adults alike to the fun of finding and popping the pods with a light pinch between two fingers, to watch them explode, but the noticing of today's seedlings growing from the pole, twelve inches above the highest parent plant, ratchets my awe up a significant notch.

Circumstantial evidence suggests that the plant's determination to regenerate itself against accidental odds propelled a few seeds high enough and with enough force to cause them to lodge into the shallow crevice of the telescoping pole. As proof of the will of natural design, the tiny seedlings impressed me more than if Michael Jordan himself had shown up in my driveway to execute a spectacular jump shot. dkm

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