Posted tagged ‘broken branches’

“People can say what they like about the eternal verities, love and truth and so on, but nothing’s as eternal as the dishes”

June 28, 2015

Last night the sky opened and the rain fell and kept falling until just a little while ago. I’m thinking we got an inch or more of rain. During the height of storm the wind was fierce, and the trees were blown about as if it were a hurricane. I have a branch down in the front yard, and my umbrella, despite its 100 pound base, tipped over onto the deck rail. One of my giant clay pots either fell or, more likely, was shoved off the rail and it shattered on the steps. I saw two grey spawns chasing each other on the deck, amorously I suspect, and they might be the broken clay pot culprits. I cleaned the mess and now have dirt under my nails.

I like Sundays, and though they are no longer the same quiet Sundays of my childhood, they do seem more subdued than any other day of the week. The kids aren’t playing in the street and even the dogs are quiet. I remember Sunday dinner as my favorite meal of the week, and I remember all of us eating together at the table. That was unusual as my Dad worked long hours and generally came home late, after we’d already eaten. He was a salesman who worked back then for J. P. Manning Co, a huge tobacco wholesaler in Boston which, among other things, sold cigars and cigarette vending machines. Once I went with my Dad to his office in Boston, but I stayed in the car. All I remember is seeing the name J. P. Manning across the top of a window.

Every dinner on Sunday had a roast as the center piece, mashed potatoes, gravy and a vegetable or two: green beans, peas, yellow waxed beans or string beans, all from cans. My mother bought her set of Sunday dishes from the supermarket, a dish a week. She also bought the accompanying dishes including a gravy boat, a vegetable server which held two vegetables and a platter for the cut slices of meat. The dishes were off-white with what looked like wheat on them as a decoration and were made of melmac. Though the dishes lasted forever, they started to fade over time and were relegated to being every day dishes.

When my mother started serving Sunday dinner on real dishes, it was cause for celebration. My mother was acknowledging we were growing up and could now be trusted with breakable dishes.

“This is a day youngsters can find the liberation they are seeking, by turning inwards, through prayer, and recognizing the temptations of greed, jealousy, lust etc.”

April 3, 2015

Last night the wind was ferocious. I went to bed early to read, but the sound of the wind grabbed my attention so many times I stopped to listen. It was easy to imagine myself in a house on a cliff overlooking the ocean while the wind whistled and howled around me. The house would be a huge old Victorian filled with dusty rooms and mystery. The French doors in my bedroom, with the prerequisite long white, billowing curtains, would face the ocean. When the doors blew open, as they usually do in mysterious houses, I’d stand on the small balcony looking out at the water while the curtains blew around me. I’d see the huge white caps pummeling the rocky shore. That was about as far as my imagination took me before I turned off the light and went to sleep. Later I was awakened by the sound of the rain.

The day is a dismal one, cloudy and damp, but it is warm, in the mid 40’s. Much of the snow disappeared with the rain except in my neighbor’s front yard. Underneath their trees a tract of snow remains. The huge plowed piles on the corner are just about gone, but my neighbor’s snow, still white, resists the warmth and the rain. I guess it is winter’s last gasp.

The morning birds are the first sounds of spring. The leaf blowers are the second. My neighbor’s deck is now being cleared of winter debris. It won’t take long. My deck, on the other hand, has leaves and branches fallen and blown from the pine trees which overhang it. Cleaning all that debris will take much longer. My backyard has some huge branches which broke off during the winter. In the no man’s land between my house and the next, a pine tree trunk has split in half. One half, leaning on the branches of other trees, will be sawed into pieces and hauled away. The other half will be left in the ground.

Good Friday has always been a no school day, but starting around the sixth grade, I had to sign up for an hour vigil at the church. I used to sneak in a book and would read the hour away. It always went fast.


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