End of summer thoughts

29/08/2016

detail

The enclosed space, perhaps an afterthought, at the back of our house  is small. The size reminds me of our inexpensive rug. One that the working class buys, bordering on gaudy, to show that they too, have dreams of more. Here, windows are everywhere. They gaze back with tired faces encased in layers of hardened enamel paint. Pure white, because it is cheap. Chipped from years of opening and closing, despite their thickness. The early morning summer sun blinds the eyes. Brittle paper shades carefully rolled onto wooden rods are tinged brown. Weathered, they remain serviceable still, for this family of the sewing mills and steel yards in Pennsylvania.

My mother pulls on silky braided cords dangling at the shades’ edges. Faded from sun and use, they too, remain serviceable closing out the blistering heat – heat that runs through this long, narrow house of brick as fans whirl. She shuts out the Angelus blue morning-glories. Silently, I watch her, but do not enter. Waiting, as only a good Catholic girl can, waiting for her to relinquish this room. This back porch.

My world. To a small seven-year old girl it is an immense space with infinite possibilities. Closing the kitchen door softly – the shared kitchen door of my mother’s world – brown & white saddle-shoed feet enter. They are eager, but silent. Alone. Breathing in the heat, the tepid air, the wonder of it all.


To balance my life this school year, I have begun an online writing course with author, Beth Kephart. Grateful. Grateful to be able to mesh feelings, words, and imagery for so inspiring a teacher.

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