As I stepped from my car, my five-year-old nephew, Mark, immediately grabbed my hand and started yanking me along.
“Oh, wow, Mark, what’s up? Where are you dragging me off to?”
“You’ll see, Unka!” Mark exclaimed.
He led me around the house to the carefully planted garden in the back. The vegetables were just beginning to sprout. At the head of each row, a seed pouch with a picture of a vegetable stood on a stake.
“See, Unka! Seeseeseesee!” my nephew shouted.
“What? Where?” I asked.
“Here!” Mark said, dropping to his knees.
A drawing was staked to the ground, just like the seed pouches. It was a picture of a fish—not a bad effort for a five-year-old.
“Member when I caught that little fish?”
“Yeah,” I replied, thinking back to last weekend when I had tagged along with Mark and his father on a fishing expedition. Mark’s fish had been almost as small as the hook that snagged it. I remember him bringing the fish home to put in his aquarium.
“How’s it doing? Did the other fish put out the welcome mat?” I chuckled.
“Oh, I’m sorry. I didn’t know.”
Knowing how delicate a small child’s feelings can be, I put on a grave face. I knelt down and rested a hand on his shoulder. “Well then, this must be the fishie’s grave. I’m sorry I missed the funeral.”
He looked up at me with a bright smile. “Oh no, Unka. I planted it. I am going to grow a whole bunch of fishies!”
—By C. Duane Hague of Portland, OR.
This article was published originally in 2018, in GreenPrints Issue #113.