The Story of Two Blueberries

By Katerina Bonderud, TIWP Student

All curious eyes were hidden behind the curtain of their eyelids.

“I brought something for you this morning.” The monotone voice spilled into throughout room.

I hope it’s food…

Is it money?

I didn’t ask for anything…

What did he bring us?

I don’t care what you brought, I don’t want to take it away from you.

The thoughts around suffocate me.

“Think over the passage… what comes to your mind?” His voice crawls into the ears around me and into their head.

I don’t want what you have to offer.

“This cold, whispery morning, I brought you some blueberries,” he says placidly, with no emotion added.

Blueberries? How many? Just one? I want more.

I’ve never had a blueberry before…

Do we get to eat them?

Are they old?

Are you tricking us?

Thank you, but I politely decline.

The wondering thoughts drag around the room waiting for him to go on.

“You may open your eyes at the end of the sound of this bell.” A moment later, an awakening calm ring rolls around the room fast. Fast. Fast. Slower fast. Slower fast. Slow. Slower. Slower. Stop. 

I open my eyes.

All eyes are open except for one dozed off kiddo in the back.

“What was your immediate reaction to me saying I brought blueberries for you?” he asks.

You brought blueberries for us ungrateful rich kids to try and make us mindful; grateful; aware. There is people all around the world with grumbling stomachs who would be more grateful to have just one berry, then some of us getting a car for our sixteenth birthday.

The moment of our thoughts passed, and he calls on one girl in the back. “What did you think Bridget?”

“Well, I’ve never had a blueberry before,” she chuckles.

The class errupts into laughs and question marks. “You’ve never tried a blueberry?” some exclaimed.

She blushes. Oh the joy of useless knowledge to share with your peers to make you stand out. She may think she is the class clown, which she most certainly is. However, she didn’t think over what that title might include.

Bridget: the girl whose never tried a blueberry in her life because she prefers pressed juices and all organic pasta instead.

It’s just a thought.

It creates a lump in my throat and a knot in my shoulder knowing the lengths people will go for attention.

Why not clean up shores? Make the class cookies? Give an old woman or man—who was a part of shaping this world that we have to this day—a hand to cross the street? Or not leave your trash on the table at lunch for the custodian? I mean, he eats. He doesn’t need your trashy food… But maybe you do because obviously you made the poor decision to lie to a class and say “I’ve never had a blueberry,” in a high girly girl voice. 

* Tired sigh. *

Two blueberries are placed in my hand. They may are sisters, maybe even brothers. Are all blueberries related if they came from the same plant?

I shake my acrobatic thoughts out of my head.

“Now class, don’t eat the blueberry quite yet. I want you to use all of your senses and get to know this blueberry.”

I look up to him.

And as if we were on the same wave link, he looks over to me.

“Think about the life of this blueberry. Every single detail before it was placed into your hands.” He look to nothing in particular because his mind is painting the picture—as if it were a dream—of the life of the blueberry.

  1. The blueberry bush was planted probably sixth months ago since farmers aerate the soil twice a year.
  2. The bush produced many other like him -or her- in the same stem it would grow out of.

I notice the little bits of fog on the blueberries from my warm hand. I set them down on the desk in front of me.

  1. The flower of which the blueberry we made from bloomed into a white little paradise for the buzzing bees around it.

Us humans are little buzzing bees… what is our “little flower of paradise”? Love? Fame? Fortune? Materials? 

  1. The blueberry was created.
  2. The blueberry’s bush filled with other blueberries, catching the eye of a nearby farmer.
  3. The cloth of the farmers glove grew closer.
  4. It could have been the very first blueberry picked of the day, or the very last.  Or the second to last… or some odd useless number.

Numbers. Numbers. Numbers have meaning only when it has a small or a big status. A million. A billion. A hundred. One thousand. One. Seven. Three. No one cares about the numbers in between. Just like the things in between our daily life. 

The emotion of sadness.

  1. The blueberry is now put into a pile of other blueberries.
  2. The pile of blueberries gets put into another pile of blueberries.
  3. Then that pile of blueberries gets put into another bigger pile of blueberries.

I’m about to eat two blueberries out of an infinite amount of blueberries. 

  1. That immense pile gets filled with water.
  2. Then, the immense watery-pile-of-blueberries gets drained and dried.
  3. The pile gets dispersed into smaller piles.
  4. Those smaller piles get put into even smaller piles.
  5. Those even smaller piles get put into even smaller piles.
  6. I just rounded up to twenty because we know this process happens probably ten times. #blueberries_are_expensive #there_is_only_about_20_blueberries_in_each_container
  7. They are put into boxes made of new, shiny plastic.
  8. The blueberries in those boxes are put into bigger boxes with other boxes of blueberries and are shipped in an even bigger box to a HUGE box with a bunch of other small boxes that consist of other things like: raspberries, nuts, strawberries and organic raspberries, organic nuts, organic strawberries.
  9. My teacher buys them.
  10. He washes them.
  11. He picks up two, hands them to one person.
  12. He picks up four and hands disperses two to two people.
  13. He finally gets to me and places two in my warm hands.

“You may eat them now.” His voice rings around the class, and takes me out of my trance.

Without a second thought, the small berries are popped into the needy mouths around.

There is no freaking way I’m killing Jimmy and Amanda. I think with tears in my eyes.

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