Resiliency, Thy Name is Noëlla

It was prosery (144 words max, not including the title and no poetry allowed) Monday yesterday for dVerse. I’m late but hey, c’est la vie, I say… Lisa at Tao-Talk is hosting and went down a rabbit hole that started with Alice Walker and her interest in Zora Neale Hurston.  So, Lisa landed on the following quote, which we must use:

No, I do not weep at the world – I am too busy sharpening my oyster knife.

                                      ~Zora Neale Hurston, from “How Does it Feel to be Colored Me” in World Tomorrow (1928).

Reading that phrase immediately brought to mind my grandmother, who was also my godmother, and to whom I have been compared (it thrills me).  No, she never used this phrase but its essence is definitely Noëlla to me.

You were my hero from the moment I was old enough to understand the stories. How you were the eldest of fifteen children and had you a choice, would have had none of your own – yet birthed seven.  How you lived in lumberjack shacks where the sun shone through the cracks and the water froze in the kettle overnight. How you had the strength to leave your alcoholic husband to raise your kids on your own – and were judged for it by the Nuns who taught your kids.  How you survived the death of all three of your sons over the years.  How you became a businesswoman, despite a grade-three education.

“No, I do not weep at the world – I am too busy sharpening my oyster knife.”

I know you were saying it’s up to you to make or break your life.