A thistle is something to prick and cause pain, so why not pull it up and free ourselves of the potential discomfort? That appears to be what has happened in the Oxford Junior Dictionary. The word thistle was removed for expressions such as “cut and paste” or words like “broadband”.

Other words in the culling are words such as bramble, fern, kingfisher, otter, and willow to name a few. As a result of this 28 authors including our very own Margaret Atwood opposed the removal of these words. Take note this children’s dictionary holds upwards 10,000 words. Regardless faceless decision makers have cut the acorn seeds of a child’s mystic imagination, removed the imaginary tumbling through bramble with playful otters while they listen to the chatter of a raven only to be transported somewhere else by the marked purple of a thistle feeding the hummingbirds.

What broadband of messages have we pasted in place for children to reference?

How did all these facts spill into the quiet of Graytuft? World renowned authors spoke, action was taken and a magical book called “the Lost Words” was published. Then other powerhouses, such as Indigo books, placed it on their guaranteed to entertain, sans regret, list and word got out. Even Maria Popova’s website Brain Pickings featured this feeble minded culling of words. There is the path that has brought this knowledge your doorstep.

But something else interesting also happened. This spring, the thistle, the one I had I pulled last year, was not pulled. As it grew small bumble bees, monarchs, and hummingbirds were all observed feasting from this purple beauty. The flying spirits that feasted never stayed long as they were fueling up for other wondrous flight paths.

What does this small, almost dusty, story tell you? It tells of brave souls who spoke their truth, others who acted through creative inspiration and powerhouses who called out for change, all of which echoed their desires until their voices threaded through the lens of my camera. It is a call and echo you now have at your feet.

Your feet remember the thistle prickle but do they recall the sweet nectar from those purple sleeves applauding your patient view?

Today, just for today, know it is worth it to speak up. It is worth it to speak peacefully. Know peace succeeds when we act, and peace savours her moment when we take time to watch what happens around the thistle, any thistle.


Jt signing off for shift.

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