An Electric Charge that Revives Our Spirits

Irina Echarry

Watering the seeds.

When I was a little girl, my parents took me to a town called Guaos in Cienfuegos, the province where my mother was born.  I had a good time there with my brother and cousins, but as the evening approached and the mosquitoes appeared, my soul began to turn as dark as that village.

The adults discussed light-heartedly while the other children (much older than me) looked for something to entertain themselves.  The outcome was that I was left alone, under the mosquito net crying.  But the next day I began running around again, having a good time and discovering new places.

I only liked the country in the daytime.  I liked to see how the farmers would plant crops and feed the animals.  But what delighted me most was seeing the earth thanking the rain for its water, as I watched the drops trying to penetrate the cracks.

Sprouting seeds.

When I grew up I followed my mother’s footsteps in growing and taking care of ornamental plants.  We ended up having so many that we gave many away to our friends.

My hands and soul had not delighted in planting for several years.

My little tree.

So a few months ago I began dedicating some of my time to this pursuit.  Along with my friend Erasmo, we began collecting the seeds of different plants and planting them.  To discover a new glimpse of life each time you look at seeds sprouting is something indescribable.  It’s like an electric charge that revives our spirits.

We plant them in little plastic bags and hope they spring up in search of light.  When they’re ready, we will look for a place where they can grow in peace.

The saplings that we planted in a few vacant lots have suffered the onslaught of hate or the unconcern or indifference of several residents. But we don’t get discouraged; we continue watering them.

Some day people will understand that the abuse of a tree undermines human beings.

Now I would love to have a house in Guaos.  I would no longer have reasons to cry at night since I know that near me life would be emerging that won’t allow me to feel alone.

Irina Echarry

Irina Echarry: I enjoy reading, going to the movies and spending time with my friends. Many of the people I love are dead, or are no longer in Cuba. I will do my best to transmit my thoughts, ideas or worries via these pages so you can get to know me. I will give an idea of my age, since it helps explain certain things. I’m over thirty-five, and I think that’s enough information. I don’t have any children yet, or nieces or nephews. There are days when I transform myself into a child with no age at all in order to see life from another angle. It helps me break the monotony and survive in this strange world.

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