A Ladies Sewing Kit…

by forrest fenn

Many of the objects in my collection are significant in a very small depiction of world history. Most are more interesting than they are important. Nevertheless, it is necessary for me to remember that each piece represents who we once were in a time that used to be, and that I will never be anything more than its temporary custodian. 



Yucca flowerAmerica’s ancient western mountains were set aside for silence, except for a constant throaty wind that whispered through the cedar breaks and ponderosas. That was the setting when an Anasazi woman in Northern Arizona cut a 25” leaf of agave of yucca. It was a cactus that grew near her spacious rock-shelter home.

She constantly twisted the leaf as she beat it with a stick against a rock. The process of transforming it into an important part of her sewing kit probably took several hours. Ingenuity was a necessity and she must have hoped that each day she would think of some other kind of useful invention.

The Indian woman mixed her leafy tool in a blob of mud and left only an inch of its needle nose exposed. It was protected from the aggressive jaws of hungry vermin.

And that’s how I found it, resting on her metate for 1,200 years, waiting for me to come along and write its biography. Don’t you just love stories like that?