Now for the past two weeks, the plant, despite my inattention, has sprouted this giant stalk (I told Pam Mordecai I know how "Jack and the Bean Stalk" got started) and it's been growing and growing, and growing…
At first, I didn't know what to make of the plant because I didn't know its name. Then, a few days ago my wife, Nadia, said to me, "I asked around and I've found out the name! In Mexico, they call it maguey."
Of course, I began my research and found a whole mythology surrounding maguey. Among other things, maguey is associated with Mayahuel (also Mayahual, or Mayouel), Mayatl, Teteo-inan, Virgin of Guadalupe, Quetzalcoatl, and Tepozteco.
I've been so busy with school work and there is so much happening around me that I haven't had time to process all the information, or to ignore the maguey that's almost been saying to me, "Slow down, Geoff," and "Look at me! I'm spectacular!" She says it with a Spanish accent. So, I have slowed down and what I've learned so far has kept me wondering about the associations:
I found the seeds at Snake Creek.
Tepozteco, the consort of Mayahuel, is a Trickster similar to Anansi.
The flowering stalk of the maguey, which can grow up to 25 feet, emerges from the heart.
The maguey is following it's own timetable and is doing what it needs to do without my assistance or worrying about it.
Mezcal, tequila, and other useful products can be made from the sap, leaves, and stalk. It's a totally consumable plant. Bio-fuel of the future?
The sheer abundance/opulence of life-of giving freely and unreservedly.
Everything about the maguey has been, like love, a perfect, unbidden gift.
I've started to track her growth and I'm definitely going to take pictures of the flowers when they bloom--which means the maguey will also die. In this lifetime, she has a lot to teach me.