Monday, May 10, 2010


Tam T. Nguyen

My father was a farmer in Viet Nam. He was growing many kinds of plants: persimmon, durian, jackfruits, avocado, plum, and coffee trees which are big trees. They grow up after many years, and then they have fruits. He, also, planted the flowers, bananas, vegetables, tomatoes, onions, and white rice. He also raised the pigs, chickens, ducks, goats, and cows.

The farm is the place to provide food for all the family, and those products to sell to make money for another business. My childhood grow up beside him with the interesting in the farmer. I was a little girl. I did not understand the world around me. I repeated and copied whatever he did, and he taught me.

We lived at the small village of the highland. We had the time hang around together at the early morning or the sunset. I always gave a question to my Dad. At the one morning, I asked my Dad, "Why the clock have the sound tick, tock, tick, tock, so monotonous every time?

He smiles at me and gave me a question again. "It is boring, isn't it?" "No, I wonder why it is only one the sound like that?" "We used the sound to remind the people to think of insight. Because everybody needs to spend time to listen to the sounds of life."

I did not understand about whatever my Dad told me. I had great time with him with all my childhood. The time is gone by, and I wonder how he handled with all of the knowledge he taught me. Each of the tick tock, tick tock of the clock going by will never ever come back. I can wait for the time, but the time never ever wait for me.

So he taught me how empty myself to open a door with the nature to talk with the trees and grass, how to feel the aura of the plant and feel the fluid through the trees. I had a wonderful time with him. I can tell him some trouble happened with the trees, or the nice feeling when the trees growing good.

Everything has a condition, even tiny flowers. He taught me how to see the right soil, the right season for each of them, and when is the time to provide the nutrition to grow up the leaves, the body of the trees, and when need some kind of nutrition to make the fruits.

For a little girl, it is really interesting. The whole world is just in the imaging mind. I can see the tree and know that the season is changing. Spending time to do the meditation with tree is so nice. I can feel the cycles of life of the trees. And I would be realize about the life is so short. I can see the germination, or the bud. Each of the second, they are change. It was the crazy to take time to see them. Or the tiny tear drop on the leaf at early morning when the sun come up.

The spending the time to talking with the tree, it helps me to be empty inside my soul, my mind. To forget the question who I am? To be a tree, I can see the world, the weather, the sky, the human being around me. Because the tree also has the cycles life, it showed me the things I can see by seeing under. It is also an aura. The excellent of the circle is the beginning point is will be the end of circle. If the beginning point does not see the end of point, it will be not a circle! It help me to understand how to be generous with everybody, and it is also make me feel generous for myself.

The language of the gardener and the trees are the feeling, the deeply feeling inside the soul. Just a tiny bud will be growing a tree. The conversation to link of the human with the tree is the silent sounds. But it is a micro sound or just a signal between the souls.

Tam T. Nguyen, tutored by Joel Baillere at the Literacy Center, talks often with Dana Prom Smith about words, syntax, writing, gardening, spirituality, and mysticism.

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