By Rose Feerick
My Mississippi wrench is in my pocket.
I grabbed it this morning on my way out the door. I was too tired, too harried to pack something for a traveling altar last night. But this morning in between pouring cereal, packing lunches, and giving boys hugs I grabbed it off my altar and thought “this will do.”
From time to time today, I found myself reaching back to touch its cool metal handle. It made me feel powerful in that grounded kind of way. Like I knew who I was – Jesus’ girl – the one who is not afraid of the gritty parts of life. Like I knew I could fix things.
I had it underneath me as I talked about Haiti on the conference call line. It reminded me of the kind of process I want to be in now – healing, mutual, listening – not that I always know how.
I’ve got it here with me now.
I knew the moment that I received it during our gathering on the Mississippi farm that it was a magical tool. A local man, the one who had unexpectedly joined us for lunch and invited everyone to tell our stories, gave it to me. It was the end of the day. He was getting into his truck. I was standing there by the window and wanted to do something to thank him for his storytelling around the table of grace. I reached into my bag and found a CD by another great storyteller friend of mine.
“Here’s a gift for you,” I said reaching out across denominational competition, generations, political orientation, and prejudice, not to mention North and South stuff.
“If I’d known you were gonna give me a gift,” he responded, “ I would have brought one for you.” He reached down into his truck and came up with the wrench.
“Here,” he said and was gone.
I’ve got my Mississippi wrench in my pocket.
I think it’s gonna fix things—that wrench—that love—that reaches past prejudice, assumptions, bad habits, and fears. Maybe it’s gonna fix me or hold me in the light.
Many individuals and organizations gave their time, vision and presence to this journey with land in Mississippi.
I honor and appreciate every one of you. Specifically, I thank Mary Brooks Tyler, David Harper, members of Be Present, Inc., Common Fire, Community Wholeness Venture, Harvest Time’s Beloved Community & Board of Directors,
The Young People’s Project and the local couple who hosted our lunch under the tent at our first gathering.
Thank you for the many gifts you offered in service to the land and the Mississippi Land Circle. I also thank our friends who offered their time and feedback to help us tell this story. Deep bow of gratitude, Rose