Wednesday, May 05, 2010

Growing Power

Last week, I attended the WK Kellogg Foundation Food & Community conference in Phoenix AZ. What a chance to see the major players in the movement, and to understand who we are--in our samenesses and differences--and where we're going.

Fast forward to my plane ride home, via Detroit. In first class, the President of the foundation. Two rows behind me, in coach, Malik Yakini, head of the Detroit Black Community Food Security Network. In other rows, lots of other Detroit-based food and community-growing hoi polloi. Next to me, a young woman from another Detroit urban farming program called Greening of Detroit. It's her second flight ever, the first being the one out to the conference. When the plane makes strange noises she turns to me, open and sweet, asking: "is that normal?"

Turbulence begins, worsens. Before I know it I have grabbed the sizable girl next to me and burrowed my face in her upper arm. Feeling pathetic I think about how I am 20 years older than she is, and how I have been on hundreds of flights in my lifetime. Quaking, fearful, I realize how much power there is in that plane--the future of the food movement (esp the local Detroit food movement) hung in the balance. I felt confident the world wasn't ready to lose all of them, that the plane just had to make it to Detroit safely, and so gradually let go of my death grip on the shoulder of the girl next to me.
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Speaking of growing and speaking of power, adios to another friend from work. Julia heads off to be an intern at Growing Power in Chicago, a rather hot shit thing to do.

I myself am growing seedlings (can you see them in the picture above?) with the help of my fairy greenmother, Cerise. These are sungold tomatoes, before I culled out 1/3 of the sprouts. With handholding. When they're sturdy enough they'll go out on the fire escape so the cats can't eat them. The eating part will be for me.

1 comment:

Amy said...

Beautiful little seedlings! I almost killed my basil and parsley again today (by not watering) and did kill my strawberries. Next to be killed? Organic lettuce planted with nasturtiums for delicious edible flowered salad. But not delicious when dead.