|One of my mom's prize-winning creations|
She could unite a trio of disparate skeins in perfect counterpoint or harmonize dozens of
leftover odds and ends into a serenade of love.
The needles used to create the masterpieces were metal. When she was absorbed in a project we would fall asleep to their accented refrain and wake to it the next morning.
Because metal needles were the needles of choice for my maestro mother, they had to be the best, the only needles worth having. So when, at an advanced age, I decided to take up knitting, I asked my mom if I could use some of her needles. She said certainly, as long as I didn’t want her to try and teach me how to knit. Again.
I tried to teach myself. The needles didn’t sing, they screeched. I didn’t create masterpieces, I created discord. I took my formless mass to a friend. Her first question was, “Why don’t you try wooden needles?”
I looked at her with silent outrage. My mother used metal needles. How dare this upstart question those instruments that had conducted hundreds of classic creations?
I gathered up my knotted mess and coldly informed her that I could take it from here, thank you.
The next time I visited my mother she hurried me to her living room.
“Look what I bought!” she said, flourishing a pair of wooden knitting needles. “I wish I’d had these years ago! You can keep those metal ones honey. I won’t be needing them.”
My shapeless mass of knotted yarn is still in a bag in the bottom of my closet. But I did find a use for my mom’s metal knitting needles.