Saturday, February 23, 2008

"Get the cards..."

Springtime. I know it's spring because she's pointing out the birds perched on the feeder outside her window. "The finches are out." A sure sign that spring has arrived in New England; as far as Nana was concerned that meant that soon the flowers would start blooming. That, and the Sox' first home game is flashing across the TV sitting on the kitchen table.

We sit in her kitchen. My brother is standing behind my aunt, my cousins are behind me in the living room and my sisters sitting next to me. They came up with Jim from Tennessee to see me, he came to see Nana.

Nana sits in her chair, gazing out the window most of the time. She smiles at us when we laugh at each other, something that happens often. Her attention returns to the TV momentarily; Mike Lowell just got a home run. Sox ahead, 1-0. She smiles again, "They're going to win again this year."

"Sure, Ma." Gail shifts in her chair and takes a sip of her Diet Coke. She asks me what I'm doing this week, and do I want to grab dinner. I say I'd love to. Josh and Amanda have to leave; they have to work this afternoon. I ask Dawn if she's going to Tennessee with Jim or if she's flying back. She said she's going back with Jim, Jim says he's leaving tonight. I turn to Becky to ask her when she's leaving. Her mouth opens to answer...

And then she's gone. She has disappeared. Jim, Dawn, Josh, Amanda, Gail... they're all gone. It's me and Nana, sitting in the kitchen just finished dinner. The local Channel 5 news is on, the weatherman telling us to expect more snow this winter. We chat for a minute or two after I throw away the plates from our Chinese food.

"If you go under there and get the card shuffler, and then go down the hall and get the cards we can play." I reach down to the cupboard to get the shuffler, and she's still talking to me. I have to look through her rings soon...

Wait... it occurs to me...

I walk over to her chair and close my eyes. She's still talking to me, though now I don't know what she's saying. I reach out to her chair where I know she was sitting moments ago. I put my hands out to feel...

And she's not there. She's gone. I fall to my knees in tears, alone in her kitchen.

I hear the sound of a snowblower getting rid of 6 inches of snow. I hear Steve's slow, sleeping breathing next to me. 9:08 AM, Saturday morning. I take a deep breath, and get out of bed. There's a lot to do today.

3 comments:

Kimberly Pye said...

Oh my.

That is some fine writing! It's so sad...

(And it would be good for "deceive" or "steal [away]" for T.A.D.)

Your transitions are so convincing! Despite it being a dream, the writing is very fluid and nothing like trying to explain a dream to someone. The reader is in the dream with you the whole time.

Be sure to keep this somewhere safe, someplace other than the volatile internet.

jimmie said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Mom said...

It's hard sometimes to find in your soul the true feelings that emerge in your dreams. You have captured that so clearly here. You bring everyone that reads it right into it with you...

Thank you opening your soul to me, to everyone...
and she's right, keep it safe...

I have a song that I wrote with a line in it that goes "don't let the bitterness of those around you...clutter up your space...walk your road with your head held high, and a smile upon your face."

never stop wanting to share...
i love you sweetie