Something from Nothing

the little girl, and her doll

the dollhouse girl I once made, with her little doll.

Making something from nothing is a powerful and spiritual task. I take great joy in making things from the smallest of scraps! In mythology, the poor people are lifted up out of great misery because they make something. This gives me hope, just as it must give hope to millions.

So I began a Google search on this topic of “something from nothing” and came up with a marvelous song Something from Nothing from the Foo Fighters, Sonic Higways last night. Their lyrics express it just right for me! The lyrics are mythical and powerful:

There is a river I’ve found
Into the wild
Under the ground
So here I go…
But in the end we all
Come from what’s come before
So here I go…
I threw it all away because
I had to be what never was…
You can’t make me change my name
I’m something from nothing…
(see the music video below)

I imagine by “river into the ground” the Foo Fighters mean they are exploring their dreams, creativity and personality. Clearly they are singing of a great and personal transformation and individuality!

wooden chest with toys and books inside
Did you know that we have many classical stories and folk lore where the heroine is an artistic, oddball,  scrapper and weaver sort-of-a-girl? I’ve always loved these stories. The young woman’s hard work on art scraps not only turns her into a princess over time (catching her a good prince), but also saves their family from certain doom, breaks witches spells and sets things right in the world.

If you think about spinning wool, it is a powerful task. It’s taking old dirty scruffy sheep wool, cleaning it, dying it, sharding and spinning it, and turning raw materials into lovely new things.

Here are a few Grimm fairy tales, that I am thinking of as I write about weaving and transforming, today:

There’s a Grimm fairy tale where a young lady wanted to save her seven brothers.  An angry old witch had cast an evil spell on them, turning the seven brothers into swans. In order to break the spell, their only sister was advised to knit them sweaters. If she just knitted each one a sweater, and also a few other things I do not recall.  the brothers will all become human again. It took seven years to knit all the sweaters and it all rested upon the shoulders of the sister. She had no help and all sorts of things to do as well, so she never did finish one sleeve. When time was up she put the sweaters on the seven swans, and it worked! They all turned back to human beings. But the one brother with the short sleeve, so one of his arm remained a wing.  In this way the sister saved her family.

Sometimes I feel sad for the poor girl, all alone seven years, missing her brothers and forced to do all the labor. I have three brothers myself.  On most days I feel lifted up by this story!

In another good fairy tale that I love, there is a bossy and rich lady and her maid. In some cases it could be a tale of two sisters.  Since I am a little sister and get hand-me-downs from my older sister, I particularly like and relate to this one!  The first lady was rich and loved to go out dating and dancing. Now the lady hated doing her own weaving and was impetuous, so she went into rages, tore her yarn, and threw it out in tangled messes.

The lady’s industrious little maid (or little sister) began to collect the scraps, unravel and clean them, and spin them at night. In time, she made a most glorious dress out of all those torn out scraps. Now as the story goes, the rich lady went out dancing. The prince she was dancing with noticed the maid in the crowds.  “Who is that lovely girl, wearing that marvelous dress over there?” He inquires. The rich lady sneers and makes fun of the maid: “oh that is just my poor little maid/sister Griselda/Miserelba/whatever-her-name-is. Just look at how she prances about like me, in the scraps I used to wear!” Well, when the prince heard that, he dropped the rich lady for her laziness, and took up with the young maiden. And the young maiden lived happily ever after…

Now coming back to current day:  Why am going on about this? Because I am a story teller, oddball, and little sister… it’s all I can do. So will do it with all my heart and I will do it well!  As the lyrics go:

You can’t make me change my name
I’m something from nothing!

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