This Thursday’s Child–It Won’t Be Stopped

I’ll be the first to admit that this picture doesn’t look like much. I took it in a park in a suburb to the south of where I live. We were there for a church picnic a couple of years ago.

After supper, I strolled along this asphalt path beside a lake. Some of the children were competing in a catch-and-release to win a new fishing pole. The little girl who won the pole was very proud of her catch, a vivid yellow perch.

On my way back from the dock, I paused to take a closer look at the uneven pavement. Something beneath the surface created crumbling ridges.

Because of the angle of the light, it took some work to get this view without overshadowing it. Some plant that propagates by underground runners is determined to sprout. I don’t know what it is, and haven’t been back there to check it against my reference books.

Tuesday afternoon, I learned that the publishing committee’s consensus was: “It’s an appealing story, with great potential, but ‘not yet.’” For the next several hours the news was about as welcome as a truckload of asphalt deposited on a garden.

However, I have personal experience with physical prematurity and the hindrances that can follow. I’d much rather have the story be deemed not yet ready, than see it brought out before it’s strong. This is proof I’m a writer. Delays and detours and outright rejections happen to everyone.

Asphalt rubble gets recycled–now to determine what’s to be done. A thorough review of my writing craft books seems to be in order, as well as a reading break filled with Pulitzer prize winners and candidates. Perhaps something in them will bring an epiphany.

The mystery plant won’t be stopped, and neither will I.