If I were an exclamation point,
I’d put myself at the end of “I love you.”
If I were a parenthesis,
I’d hug “you” from both sides.
If I were a period,
I’d place myself after forever – period.
If I were a colon,
I’d be before a line of dear, darling,
beloved, and cherished.
And if I turned into a comma,
I’d nestle between each of these words.
My quotation marks would encircle the
greatest love poem ever written,
And I would give myself to you, I would
give myself to you.
Remembrances in the Notebook of My Brain
May 28 is Memorial Day this year. It is a time for everyone to pause and reflect and remember those who have passed away.
We tend to take most memories and put them on the back burner of our brains; pausing to think about this person or that person from time to time. It is amazing how fast these thoughts seem to disappear from our brains and how swiftly those people that we swear we will remember ALWAYS seem to fade away day by day. Memories seem to like having file folders in a notebook. Turning pages of the file brings on thoughts that we think have disappeared.
I have had the misfortune to lose not one, not two, but three people in the last month. On Memorial Day, I think it will be especially difficult for me to get through the day with thoughts of those three people floating in my brain and spurring on those memories of other folks from years gone by.
On Memorial Day, I will be thinking about all the family and friends that I have lost during my life, but about ALL the men and women who have served in our military and who gave the ultimate sacrifice in our defense. I will cry the same tears for those I knew and for those that I never knew; I will beam with pride for those that are currently serving and I will pray for their safety.
I may forgo the term “Happy Memorial Day” terminology – it seems an oxymoron. I may even forgo the traditional barbeque representing the start of summer; I will be deep in thought of the true meaning of Memorial Day.
As a child there are various things that come to mind for my summer time. The warmth of the sun always felt good to me. I would go outside just to let the sun warm my heart and body. In Washington, people treasured such days.
Another memory was when my mother washed the clothes on Monday. She had an old wringer washing machine. As she pulled the clothes after the wash cycle, she then put them through the wringer that was above cleaning part of the machine to get the water out of the clothes. Next was to put them in a bluing agent and again they would go through the wringer. Then the clothes were ready to hang on the clothesline to dry during the warm days of summer. I would watch the sheets swing lightly with the gentle breeze from the air. The freshness of the smell had a way of creating a memory that would stay with a person for the rest of their lives.
When a person turned 13, they were signed up to pick strawberries, raspberries, blueberries, etc., out in the fields. This was expected of most of the kids in our area. I am thankful for this experience. It taught me the value of money and having a strong work ethic. Since it was piece work, you were paid for the number of berries you picked regardless of the weather conditions.
I was fortunate to be living in the Skagit Valley, Washington, during the summer with my two boys. When they became of the required age, they were signed up to harvest the fields like I did. It did not take long before my boys realized that working in the fields had developed strong work ethic and the lesson of if you don’t work, you don’t receive money. They also saw migrant families working from sunrise to dusk, just to put food on the table. They gain an appreciation of what they had and how important it was to have a good education.
Another teaching lesson also occurred during the summer time. As the weather got warmer and started to dry up after a somewhat rainy winter, the ground would form clumps of dirt. For some reason, my boys could not resist the temptation to throw these dirt piece at one another and the neighborhood kids, watching the puff of dirt as it broke apart. They were told a number of times not to throw the dirt pieces because it could cause injury to another person. Those dirt chunks were more than they could resist.
As soon as the community baseball season began, I signed them up for a team. This occurred for several summers. Unfortunately, the team that they were put on each season always lost, not one game, but all of their games during those years. Of course, they were discouraged but it taught them to hang in there even when you lose.
This was a natural teaching lesson. There will be time in life that will not go the way you want but you just have to pick yourself up and keep working towards your goals. My only regret is that both boys hate baseball to this day.
Well, some days you win and some days you lose but that’s the way the ball bounces.
Runners, walkers, sprinters, pokers,
Strutters, and breathless talkers;
Arm swingers, hip swayers, a fancy hair-do,
Mamas, papas, box toters, shufflers too;
Who are these people, what do they do;
Where are they going, I leave that to you.
If you want to see a segment of your society,
Jump in and take a seat next to me.
There they are right in front of us,
They arrive by auto, not by bus.
Have you any idea yet, who they are as
You gaze out the windshield of my car?
I will give you one more clue; the
Rest is then all up to you.
Despite the fact it’s a sunny day
This place is inundated with grey.
Where was I when all this took place
In front of the post office in a parking space.