She leans into glow of a 15-watt lightbulb, petite figure poised, the needle bobs, her fine fingers guide calico or corduroy.

Little granddaughter, mesmerized by hum of machine, warmed by soothing songs, spills treasures from a floral tin, frugal notions of past creations.

She sits amidst buttons on sisal beside the cabinet Singer, sifts and sorts delicate blue squares with thumb and forefinger, four-holed yellow rounds, elephant-shaped ivory from old silk shirt. Cool of dulled brass. Icy, sparkling glass diamonds. Whiff of Bakelite, tang of metal box. Lemon-scented oil-can wears a tiny red cap.

Together, time alone, quiet creativity.

Eastern light—
royal hue of
African violets