I met Tolu Talabi, whose work you’re reading today, at the Farafina Workshop. Tolu is an extremely intelligent guy whose work I think is simply brilliant! I saw this and thought to share it with you. Do enjoy and share your thoughts on your way out.
Tolu writes (along with the other members of the Farafina 2011 workshop) at Linguistic Playfulness.wordpress.com.
You say, “I’m not looking for anything right now. I’m not interested. My life is too complicated, I am never home, I can’t make time for it.”
But they counter with the same arguments they always use, “It’s so cute, you’ll love it. It’s beautiful.” “Won’t it be nice to have something to come home to? something to look forward to?”
So you argue back and forth and eventually get to a concession that sees you going home from the florist with a potted plant. A simple plant that you should be able manage on your busy schedule. Something so low maintenance even you can’t screw it up, all you have to do is check on it a couple of times a week, take it out so it spends some time in the sun, and feed it by watering.
The first couple of days are wonderful, everything looks great, its beautiful flowers stand upright greeting you with a smile at the end of every day. But then it all starts to go wrong because even the low maintenance ones have needs they don’t tell you about. At first it’s little things, bits and pieces that used to exist before no longer do. Some of the things that change are hardly noticeable, but all are warning signs. The welcoming smile is gone. Petals wilt and fall off. The leaves hang limply, browning at the edges. You do everything you’re supposed to, but there is no improvement.
So you ask, “how can I fix things? How can I make things better? How can I turn things back to the way they used to be?” But it’s a plant and plants don’t talk. Communication has always been a one-way street, and that didn’t bother you back when things were rosy. You didn’t care until things turned sour and now you need to be told what to do.
“What do you want? Just tell me what you want and I’ll do it!” you scream, but there is no response.
You look up ways to make it better, online searches for sunny getaways, anything to bring the smile back. You seek expert opinion, the advice of someone who understands, anyone who has been in a similar situation.
“Is there an horticulturist in the house?”
Nothing works… its once proud flowers droop, all but dead, shadows of their former selves. But you don’t give up, not yet. You spend more and more time on it, trying different things, taking it out more often, watering feverishly. Things that you should have done more of in the beginning. It’s too late for regrets now, your frantic attempts only bring you closer to the inevitable end.
Finally, you make a last ditch effort, you put in so much water that it spills over the edges, love overflowing, you take it outside on the hottest day…. there it all comes to a head, the plant drowns, the remaining leaves wither away in the scorching sun. All you’re left with is an empty pot with dead roots.
A flower pot that once held a beautiful daisy.
An empty heart that once had a connection.