Mekong Cultural Hub

Butterfly pea / Đậu biếc (Út Quyên)

Hai Duong
During a long lockdown due to COVID, I planted a butterfly pea on the terrace. Each day over two months, I went to the terrace twice to water the plant. People say butterfly peas love sunshine, but it turned out that this plant only liked the early morning sun. I built a trellis covering on top of the terrace, where the sun only shone down from noon to afternoon. The plant insisted on directing all its tops towards the tiny fake window where the first sunlight of the day will shine through. No matter how much I tried to bend it toward the terrace the previous day, the next morning, the plant would turn back toward its favorite direction.

After the lockdown was lifted, I had to leave home. I designed an automatic watering device using a medical water tube in the hope that it could provide water for two weeks. The device did not work that long, because after a while the moss grew in the bucket and blocked the tube. The plant became fragile and yellow, but it survived until my mom’s return.

I have been away from home for a year. I've never asked mom about the plant, afraid to hear if it has died. If it is not there when I get home, I would probably be sad. Even though I know that nothing lasts forever, not even the butterfly pea I planted myself, not even the people I love, not even me, or this world. 一切隨緣吧.

Contributor: Út Quyên

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