2022 Writing Contest

“It’s pretty bad, but we did manage to find some plants that weren’t too badly damaged and some seeds that could be planted now for a small crop of vegetables and a small crop of herbs that might see you through winter.” Michael added, “We looked around for some sign that would give a clue about who could have done this awful thing, but we couldn’t find anything at all.” Esther smiled at them. “Thank you for looking. I would have been surprised if you had found something. It’s like they appeared out of nowhere, caused the damage, then disappeared back into nowhere.” Esther sighed, “That can’t happen, not really, right?” As she spoke those words, something flashed through her mind, but it was gone before she could really grasp it. Daniel shrugged his shoulders and Michael just gave a slight shake of his head. No one said anything for a few moments then Michael set his backpack on the table. “You did take it.” said Esther. I was looking for it earlier to put the bread back in it. Michael smiled at her, “I never go anywhere without my bag.” He opened the top of the bag and pulled out several bunches of carrots, two handfuls of beets, some small potatoes and 5 tomatoes. “How did you get all that in your bag?” asked Esther in amazement. “It’s all in the packing.” Answered Michael with a smile. Then Daniel started emptying his pockets. Each pocket held a small pile of seeds. Six different varieties in all. “But what are these seeds from?” Esther asked. Daniel shrugged his shoulders and smiled. “Don’t know. Let’s plant them and see what comes up.” “But it’s August! We could have a frost by the end of September. It’s too late to plant.” Esther said sadly. “Well then, we’d better get to planting.” Chimed in Michael. Outside, as she was about to step off the porch, Daniel stopped her with a gentle touch on her arm. “No, dear lady, you set here,“ indicating the rocking chair that Daniel brought out, “and let us do the planting.” Esther started to protest but Michael spoke softly, “It is our gift to you, for your kindness.” “You have been the kind ones,” replied Esther. “All I did was offer you a place to stay, which you turned down, and some coffee.” Daniel smiled, “True, but you offered. You would be surprised how many people don’t offer anything, even a cup of coffee.”