What a lovely Sunday morning, that I woke to. The sun rose with a gentle light. Birds were singing, happily. They did not sing songs of revolution, nor for their rights, nor chaos. They sang because they could. Peace washed over me like a fountain and I wished, every living soul on this planet could partake in it. I think it impossible, to witness a morning, full of a soothing splendor, and not feel grateful and hopeful. It is very humbling to know the grandness of nature and it neednt’ be an ocean , nor a mountain top, a patch of sunlight will do nicely. “Joy does come in the morning”.
I do not know the last time, that I was home for two week ends in a row. I was not sitting here void of something to do, at least. I never am. I started washing the windows, a task that I abhor. Of course, I wait til my view of the garden and the cherry tree is obscured entirely.. before I wash them. There are eighteen windows in this old house, not counting the sun room nor the laundry room! Then and almost foremost, is the territory, full of fallen leaves hemmed up in every corner and about knee deep . Gone are the days, when I accomplished such things in a single day. I would rather cook a full meal for twenty four people and wash curtains than attempt windows and leaves. . .and besides, I am just not good at washing windows. That beloved sun tattles on me every time.
I decided to cook a “Sunday Dinner”. A roast could cook slowly and so could a pot of beans. Kyle is supposed to stop by today and I will share with Mama. It will be a delightful diversion from my tainted windows. I sorely miss those Sundays, a few years back, when Mama and Daddy came. I always find it amusing, that we will go to such great lengths to orchestrate an event, we are sure is destined to become a golden memory. . . when the reality is, we are much more likely, to remember the “way” of life, mostly.
The Sundays of my childhood meant Church and Church clothes. Hard pinching patent leathers, itchy lace, sashes and if Mama got lucky, my hair would hold curl, til we got there. I did love Sunday school and it wasn’t just because of the cookies. I had the sweetest teachers . . .Miss Nellie, Miss Catherine, Miss Jo and later the dear Miss Tillie. These women made me want to be good. I learned my verses faithfully and still hum the sweet songs, I learned. These ladies, did not look mighty or powerful, but they were, for their love was sufficient and enough to last a lifetime.
Now, in those days, children attended the service, afterwards. The pianist, Miss Arahbelle , was like a quiet light. She did not bang out the old hymns, but played them reverently. The preachers were not quiet-and they always seemed mad about something. I was always sure that we were all an awful lot . . . but if you caught them on a Tuesday, they were friendly, regular folks and I loved everyone of them.
Mama tells a funny story about how one preacher saved her life. I do not know why, Mama was in Grandmamas’ china cabinet, in the first place. The doors were difficult to open, but Mama just snatched as hard as she could, til at last the whole cabinet tumbled over, shattering the cups and plates, with dainty flowers on them. The racket sent folks running and at that very moment, the preacher walked in! Wisely, he stayed long enough, for Grandmama to regain her good sense. . .and so Mama lived to tell about it. I suppose some memories are made in that kind of way.
I spend a lot of time remembering. I do not want to forget the people that loved me as a child. I do not want to forget the way of my life. It seems like an extravagant gift that is too grand not to talk about. . . and it feels selfish, not to remember. As I washed those dirty windows I recalled all sorts of details about my elders, my cousins and the little farm . I do not embellish their stories, the truth is good enough. Besides, these people in some way, belong to my children and to Lyla, Brynn and Ryan -and the ones yet to come. In a world ablaze with change, it does me good to remember, for it makes me keenly aware of what really matters, what lasts – and somehow it preserves my stamina to “act right”.
I do not only remember, when I work. I dream too. I do a lot of “wishful thinking”. I can’t help but take note of what I do have right at the moment, too. A small flock of red finches broke my trance, once. The sunshine, at a certain hour, lit up one of the old oaks til it was a spectacular blaze of scarlet. My boxer slept as peacefully in the sun as the vast field in front of the rabbitpatch. When the ladder moved, so did the boxer. I was glad to have such a faithful dog. What a comfort, he is to me. He is a handsome dog , as well and earns his keep in a lot of ways.
It didn’t matter to me which way I looked, or the direction of my gaze, this current day, I realised that God, has turned me “every which way . . .but loose”. -all of my life.
By the end of the day, I had given the windows, my best shot and a few piles of leaves , now burned cheerfully. I also cleaned up my potting and planting station and took note of other tasks that loomed ahead.
Supper was ready, when I walked in which was a good thing, for I was weary to the bone. . . but so restored in spirit.
Since, I have been away . . all this happened.