There are a lot of beautiful words in russian language. One of them – the word you can sound like “svazano”. It means a connection between things. At the same way it means knitting, carving, linking, attaching, fixing, bringing together. It was difficult for me to translate it in English, so I decided to leave it as is. When you’ll see “vso svazano” in the text of this fairy tail you can think about it as “all is connected”, “all is knitted”, “all is linked” together. “Vso svazano” is a mystical, lovely, warm, Russian way of thinking. Please try to feel it deeply. Author.
My grandma loves to knit. She is a true master. Last night, I dreamed of her multi-colored rainbow threads again. I woke up, and I am sitting silently on the edge of my bed. I rub my eyes, and open them wide. Granny has already washed the floors this morning – they sparkle in the bright sunlight shining through the windows. The oven is lit – it is nice and cuddly warm in the room, and Grandma has baked a pie (I want some of granny’s pie!). Now, she’s sitting at the table knitting a new warm sweater for grandpa. The hens are clucking and the chains are clanking – that must be Lucky who came out of the doghouse to sip some water. I smile and I think about how funny it looks when he sticks his tongue into the water with a splash.
“Granny, I wo-o-oke u-u-up”.
“Good morning, my dear Stitchy! Do you want a piece of pie?”
“Then, come. I’ll get you a glass of milk, too”.
I get dressed quickly. My slippers are made of wool, warm and soft, with little ears, and they carry me quietly over to my granny. She is so big, she has to be hugged first thing in the morning. I snuggle up to her and sink deep into her soft arms. I stand there for a while sniffing. Finally, I climb onto the stool, turn around towards the table, and take a piece of pie from the plate (“Take the one that looks at you”). I am eating it, and drinking the cold milk, dangling my feet.
“Granny, where’s grandpa?”
“He is shearing the sheep”.
“To get wool”.
“To spin yarn”.
“To weave threads”.
“To roll them into balls”.
“So that I can knit a new jacket for you”.
“Because you’ve outgrown the old one”.
“Why are you growing up? That’s something you need to find out for yourself, my little Stitchy, granny says with a smile”.
Granny is smiling and I am smiling back at her. I eat my pie up, and drink up my milk. Then, I pull my sketchbook out, put it on the table, take a pencil, stick out my tongue, and start drawing flowers. Suddenly, an idea flashes through my mind, just like a spark: the colored lines that I have drawn on the paper look like granny’s threads. I start laughing:
“Granny, look at the flowers I have knitted!” – This makes me laugh out loud, so much that I can’t stop myself.
“Well, well”, – granny puts her glasses on (for some reason she knits without glasses) and examines my scribbles on the paper with a serious face, – “Good job. Soon you will learn how to really knit”.
“Granny, can you teach me?”
“Teach you? I can only show you how to knit, and then you’ll learn it later yourself”.
“Show me now, please, granny”.
“No, wait a little. It’s too early for you to knit. You’ll be bored”.
“But gra-a-a-nny, come on sho-o-ow me, I won’t be bo-o-ored, gra-a-anny!.. Pleaaaase!”
Granny looks at me over the rim of her glasses and beckons me over with her finger. I happily slip down from the stool and jump onto her knees. Granny says:
“OK, my Stitchy. I’ll show you how to knit. Only, I know it’s too early for you. But, o.k., if you insist, I’ll show you. If you want to, you’ll knit, if you don’t, want to, you won’t. Only there’s one secret, promise me you will tell absolutely no one about it”.
I catch my breath, and I turn into a small ball of anxious excitement.
“Dear granny, honestly, I swear, I will never-ever tell anyone!”
“Well, you can tell of course, but no one will believe you. Some will laugh, others will think you’re silly. People know nothing about knitting and about thread, they put on clothes, whatever clothes they have, they wear them and think that trousers and skirts grow on trees. So, watch me carefully, and if someone asks you how your granny knits, you smile at them and say: “She sits and knits, what difference does it make to you?” OK?”
“OK, granny. And when will I learn how to knit myself?”
“To knit? People learn how to knit, dear Stitchy, when they remember what a thread really is”. – I don’t understand, what she means. I open my mouth to ask, but granny suddenly kisses my forehead.
And then it happened! I felt as if I if I was sliding down from a big steep hill in a small cart, like the one I rode in the park one time. Down and up, and then to the side, and again down and up. I was screaming from surprise and a rushing, infinite multicolored joy. The joy was so great that it felt like I was woven of a sparkling light. I looked around and it seemed like the shining hills on which I was riding in my cart had no end – all around was a tangled web of curves and zigzags, and I was riding fearlessly, at a crazy speed, and it was pure happiness. It was amazing that some threads could be seen and others couldn’t, even though I knew they were there. Suddenly I understood that there was no cart, no rails, and that all there was, was one beautiful network of thick threads, which let me go in whatever direction I wanted. And then, somehow, I found myself at the bottom looking up at a surface, shimmering with all the colors of the rainbow, and woven from my joy. I laughed out loud, when I understood that what I saw was just the top of our table. I looked back and I caught my breath, filled with delight- everything around me was woven, knitted and braided together: the walls, the floor, the ceiling, the door, the table, the windows, the pictures on the wall, the stove, which was burning with a multicolored light. I noticed every little thread. And how delicately it was all done! I saw the tree rings in the the wood of the table, and I laughed: every single layer was knitted from a thread of different color. Even the scratch on my skin, with its uneven edges, was very accurately and delicately carved- woven.
I don’t know how much time I had spent sitting like this and looking excitingly at everything around me. Suddenly, I felt like looking at the sweater I was wearing, but I caught sight of my hands sticking out. Hands of many-colored threads! Can you believe it: my hands were woven of many-colored shining threads! I was so surprised, that I simply couldn’t breathe for a few seconds…
“Yes, my dear”.
“Look, I’m also knitted!”
“Of course, my sweet girl”.
“Just like that. Vso svazano”.
“Vso svazano? All and everything?”
“All and everything. Even me”.
I turn to my granny and… I can’t say a word… Granny… she is joy and love. Dear granny. I see how granny loves me. And how I love her. Multicolored threads.
“Do you see now?”
“I see… And who has knitted all this?”
“What do you mean who? Your own granny has knitted it. Me”.
“You??? How is that?”
“How? Like this. With needles”.
“Granny… Your needles are knitted, too…”
“Of course they are knitted. What else could they be?” – Granny laughs.
“Wait granny… I got all tangled up…”
“Don’t get tangled up, dear, get untangled”, – granny laughs.
For some time we sit quietly. It feels so good just watching the things around me.
“Granny… And who makes the threads?”
“What do you mean, who? Grandpa does. He shears the sheep, makes the wool, the yarn. I’ve already told you that”.
“Granny, and these threads…”
“Sweet girl, don’t you see? It’s only one big thread. But one made of many colors.”
“Ah, I see…”
“Granny… are we really knitted from one and the same thread?”
“Look. Do you see?”
“Yes, Granny, I see. But who am I then?”
“What do you mean, who? You’re my Stitchy, of course”, – granny smiles.
“Granny… But this thread… Won’t it rip?”
“Rip? Look, how you’ve just knitted this very word from the same thread. You see? Do you think it can ever rip?” – My granny and I laugh.
“Granny… Can I learn how to knit?”
“You? Haven’t you always been knitting already?”
“I guess that’s true…”
“Granny, but why do people not notice this?”
“Some people are tied up in a knot, others are tied to something. They think – the better the knot they tie, the better it is. They are so proud of themselves, and then forget about the thread”.
“Yes, I see… You can always recall this thread…”
“Granny, and if someone saw the thread, couldn’t that help the others to get unraveled?”
“Why get unraveled?” – Granny laughs, – “it might help them to get loose, but people get unraveled later…”
“Granny, will you get unraveled?”
“Your granny is not that old yet to unravel completely. First, I need to help you become a master knitter, so that you won’t forget about the thread”.
“Oh, granny, how I love you! You are still so young!”
“What about grandpa… He makes the threads, you knit… And what about me?”
“You? You draw, write, and read. Maybe someday you will come loose and learn to knit”.
“Now, you are not really loose yet”.
“And when that happens, will I still be Stitchy?”
“When you come loose, you will simply understand that you are a thread, always have been, and always will be”.
“I think I get it…”
“Really?” – Granny looks at me in a strange way.
“My dear, sweet Stitchy, my lovely Stitchy… Go to sleep a little more and then, wake up”.
My grandma loves to knit. She is a true master. Last night, I dreamed of her multi-colored rainbow threads again. I woke up, and I am sitting silently on the edge of my bed. I rub my eyes, and open them wide.
This is the link to the story in original Russian.