February 7, 2012

on pearls and oysters

Someone told me once that I am
like a pearl, and tried
to explain it to me and
at the time I smiled
wanly, I'm sure
and nodded and thought it was
a nice, if somewhat empty, thing to say.

Now I think I am not at all
like a pearl, or at least
I don't really want to be
for a pearl, at it's heart
is sand, and sand
is broken rock, worn down
to nearly nothing, grey
or brown and dull and I hope
my heart cannot be described with such
dreary words as broken, grey, brown, or dull.

I hope that I am more like the oyster,
whose pain created the pearl.
The oyster, who did the hard work despite
the wounding foreign shard, who
wrapped and wrapped a grey and dull and
hurtful broken thing in
silky iridescence, covered it in
layers of beauty and mystery
and the joyful surprise of discovery and yet
will never forget that yes, there is
a secret bit of brokenness
at the heart of this lovely thing it has made.


  1. I love you, love you, love you, Vera Kate.

    I love you!

    I love your writing self and your creative self and that wondrous Vera-Kate-ness of you.

    Not trying to be weird, really. But I do find you so grand.

    You ARE the oyster. And beautiful as any pearl could be, too.


    Cathy in Missouri

    1. If you are ever in the Bay Area, I'd like to hug you. Ok?

  2. You can count on it. Hugs all round!

    (P.S. I used to date a serial killer in the Bay Area. Okay, he wasn't officially a serial killer, but I always said his aptitude was exceptionally high. Then he moved to Bermuda. I think he was a serial killer there, too. I am glad that now, he does not live in your city!)

  3. I can't say it better than Cathy already has. I must be quicker off the block with my commenting or all my words become obsolete! This is beautifully written. You could certainly never be described as broken, grey, brown or dull. You are the oyster, making the hurtful lovely. But yes, beautiful as any pearl too xo