When she was old and fading –
her gray hair paling,
her skin thinning and softening –
my grandmother painted watercolours.
A mustard seed of memory
shuttled yellow clouds across canvas,
stilled storms, swept the earth into peaks:
with her paintbrush, she moved mountains.
From this Sunday’s gospel (Luke 17:5-10):
The apostles said to the Lord, “Increase our faith!” The Lord replied, “If you had faith the size of a mustard seed, you could say to this mulberry tree, `Be uprooted and planted in the sea,’ and it would obey you.
On the way home I heard a piece on NPR about the late artist and personality, Bob Ross. A participant in a Bob Ross Certified Instructor’s painting class, Susan Rossi, told how Bob Ross’s painting opened up a world of possibilities for her after a stroke changed her life:
You think, wow, no limits. You can move clouds, you can change mountains …
I received the sudden (and not altogether mountain-shattering) revelation that mustard-seed faith is really in league with breadcrumb imagination to re-create the kingdom of heaven …