Sunday, February 28, 2016

Sunday morning prompt - write to this quote:

"Once in his life a man ought to concentrate his mind upon the remembered earth. He ought to give himself up to a particular landscape in his experience; to look at it from as many angles as he can, to wonder upon it, to dwell upon it.
He ought to imagine that he touches it with his hands at every season and listens to the sounds that are made upon it.
He ought to imagine the creatures there and all the faintest motions of the wind. He ought to recollect the glare of the moon and the colors of the dawn and dusk."   ~N. Scott Momaday

I spent my childhood
in love with home—
with the gold/emerald grasses that knelt under my feet
and stood again after I passed,
with the spring flowers in my mother’s garden,
violets, lily of the valley, daffodils,
their breath sweet, their faces washed in sunshine,
and later, the fairy roses that climbed the fence
and hobnobbed with the first cut hay;

with the rough rocks that lined the banks
of the small brook that cut a path
through barbed and tangled berry bushes,
ripe with bee-spun fruit;
with the bent branches of an old apple tree
I climbed on, pretending I was astride a unicorn;
with the dirt road that, once tarred over,
led me past neighboring farmland, past deep woods
where I would prowl, looking for signs of bear
or wild Indians, half Indian myself, walking toe first
through the crackling underbrush;

with the staccato tap of rain on leaves
the warm, green-brown scent of wet earth
and great equinoctial storms
that presaged the change of seasons;
with my small, cross-legged self,
small among the cornstalks,
watching a chipmunk forage for kernals,
and once, a stately antlered buck watching me;

with the drift and spin of painted leaves,
touched by the brush of frost
and the tented webs that glimmered
red and blue and glittering silver on September lawns;
with the first snowflakes whispering on a chill wind
with knee-deep drifts, and sleds,
and green Christmas mittens, up-turned collars
and scratchy scarves, snowpants that swished,
galoshes with frozen buckles that finally yielded
to small, determined, snow-frozen fingers;
with March winds that rattled the old wooden shutters,
blew snow that piled in small drifts
on the window sills and etched icy ferns on the panes;

with the return of robins, blue eggs huddled in a nest
I could spy on from the upstairs window,
finding great comfort in the way
the parent birds looked after their young
until, at last, the babies flew.


Barb said...

I got chills as I read your account of place and sank into my own memories which are much the same (a PA country childhood). Thank you for taking me back. Your writing is so evocative.

Tabor said...

Thank you for this lovely nostalgic and imagery filled journey.

Out on the prairie said...

Very nice to see similarities in our lives

Molly Bon said...

Like Barb said --- this got me thinking of my own home and how, though its far away, I carry it with me wherever I go....

Wisewebwoman said...

Beautifully written full of longing for the home of the heart. Sometimes unattainable.


Stella Jones said...

That's a beautiful piece of prose Pauline. I enjoyed it so much. I think the colours of our past are so much brighter and richer than those we see today. Bless you for sharing your memories, so richly described.

Pauline said...

Thank you, Barb, for a lovely comment.

Tabor - it's so hard to see that house and not want to be back there.

OOTP - we do seem to think the same about the important things.

Molly - I do carry the memories and they are good ones :)

WWW - in this case, yes, and that never fails to sadden me despite my good memories of that place.

Stella - my thanks to you for stopping by to read and comment.

Hilary said...

Nobody paints time and memories with words the way that you do. You gave the gift of a year from your childhood, here.. expressed so perfectly, it could have been mine. Nostalgia by proxy.

Brigitte said...

The eight commenters are leaving me very little to add except to say thank you for another extraordinary post, sharing your childhood experience of life at its best!

Jerry E Beuterbaugh said...

Writing Down the Words has been included in our A Sunday Drive for this week. Be assured that we hope this helps to point even more new visitors in your direction.

Marja said...

Hi Pauline I came here through Jerry and I am glad I did what a beautiful memory written in so much detail that you can see it in your mind. Thanks for sharing I really enjoyed this