Happy Birthday Lesley
She gives me unshakable trust. Doggedly and honestly allowing me to write as I write. When, in her mind, I’ve penned something exceptionally beautiful, she reacts with a suitable expletive. Invariably ending with ‘brilliant’.
She lends it her Scottish words, carefully considered and weighed. Patiently, she reviews my subsequent tinkering. Every now and then she explodes on my behalf, when, in her penetrating eyes, someone hasn’t treated me as well as they should.
We think up new words together. Nutkrukker is number 1. A glorious interplay between Scots and Dutch that’s also pronounced in an exaggerated Scots-Dutch accent.
She has the gift of being able to recognise what’s important to someone else.
She gave me the Japanese bowl with the blue bird and the golden crack. I cried when she and the love of her life presented it to me. They gave me something incredibly beautiful. Appreciation for the work of my own writing hands. With cracks and all.
Today I contemplated how I could pass that on. That reading of someone else’s talent. Maybe you’ve temporarily lost your talent, or someone tried to sweep it under the carpet. Perhaps you did that yourself. Or you believe that you don’t, and never did, possess any talent at all.
Maybe you’ve a talent for optimism, like the man of my Life. Or a talent for spotting the talent in someone else. If you were to sit around a huge table with your family and friends, you could pin a talent to every name. And if someone had lost their talent, you’d go looking for it. I don’t know anyone without talent. The beauty of talent, by the way, is that it always remains. Even if you neglect it a little. Your talent is part of your Life.
Thank you, Lesley