The Nameless Woman of the Trees
This week I spent three days with Laura at her camp in the woods. As part of my camping gear, I brought along an afro and a prom dress. Grover insisted on wearing the afro.
For a moment we considered that Hotei might be destined to wear the prom dress. However, we soon realized that the wearer of the dress should not be confined to the earth. She should be free to float through the forest at the edge of camp. With string, ribbon, tulle, sticks, and leaves, Laura and I sketched her shape between the trees.
Though he was sad he couldn't wear the dress, Hotei helped by dragging a skein of ribbon along the ground, tangling it with the leaves, and knitting a lovely shawl to match the dress. He was proud of his work.
We strung her high above us, so she could see further in every direction. Then we sat on the forest floor and basked in her presence.
We thought of names. Her limbs reminded me of Titus Andronicus' unfortunate daughter, Lavinia. Laura and I sat quietly with her, watched, and realized that she was no Lavinia.
She didn't need to be bound by a name, any more than she needed to be bound by the earth. Thus she became The Nameless Woman of the Trees.