Storying Sheffield


Many thanks to Chrissy for sharing this story. At the bottom of the post is some information about Chrissy.

Throughout the winter, the grass had been quietly remembering the summer. It still felt the area where a disposable barbeque had sat, surrounded by a family whose laughter had tickled each of the green blades it fell upon. The grass loved those laughter vibrations, they buzzed in such a delightful way and it could feel the human happiness resonating within each fallen giggle.

There was still a flattened area where two people had lain for almost a whole day: a girl and a boy who were falling in love upon this sea of green. The grass had listened as they pointed to the clouds and painted fantastic pictures of fantasy creatures in the sky. This had been wonderfully exciting as the grass had never before realised that such a world existed in the great blue expanse that it gazed up at every day. Now that it had learned what to look for in the heavens, the grass sensed that quiet weekday afternoons would never be boring again.

Although the sun had dried the earth many times since this day, it could still feel the moistness of a heartbroken teenager’s tears. She had flung herself upon the grass, burying her head in her hands as she tried to escape the bitter taste of unrequited love. The grass listened as she talked to herself and professed her love for someone who sadly did not hold her dear. It tried to make itself as comfortable and soft as possible to support this fragile form, and remembered feeling the sting and saltiness of her tears.

So many stories were gathered over the summer months and the grass was grateful for them when the winter arrived and people no longer came to lie in the park. Aside from listening to the excited ramblings of dogs that came exploring with their noses, the world was quiet. The grass used this time to recall all the tales that had unfolded upon it, and delighted in the fact that it had been a part of these stories even if the characters themselves would never realise it.

Today the grass did not need to remember a story for it had its own exciting event. The crocuses that had been softly sleeping in the earth had suddenly burst through the ground in a glorious noisy chorus of colour. If the grass had a heart it would have been soaring at this moment for it knew how beautiful it must look after the grey humdrum of winter. The green sea was now dotted everywhere with yellows, purples, whites and many other colours: it was as if a great paintbrush had swept across the landscape filling the scenery with colour as far as the eye could see. Spring was arriving and the grass knew that following the spring would be another wondrous summer of laughter, tears, joy and love. It relaxed and waited, knowing that it was not long until the stories would begin to be told again.

Chrissy Bonham
Chrissy is 30 years old and is currently in recovery from a mental illness. She is a regular user of Sheffield mental health services and has learnt many tools there to help manage her condition. She has particularly found the practise of Mindfulness helpful as it has allowed her to enjoy the beauty of nature quietly without lots of chatter in her head spoiling it! She feels we can all learn a lot from nature and getting outside and simply experiencing it has been one of her major coping strategies. The natural world and the environment inspires a lot of her writing and she often thinks about the part it plays in all of our lives.