“The sun loved the moon so much he died every night to let her breathe.”
The darkness is deep. Like being in a cavern underneath the ground where you can’t even see the hand in front of your own face. So dark you question whether or not you even exist. But the darkness is broken by pinpricks of light. Pinpricks of beauty. Pinpricks of soft light that kiss the darkness and make it less formidable. These lights are old. They hold history. They have seen centuries upon centuries of stuff. Wars. Perfect love. Movements. Change. They are mysterious because they know so much. And yet, it is not a terrible mystery. It is beautiful and it shines with a knowledge that wants to give but has no choice to do so. And, it’s funny because isn’t life always like that? The secrets we want to share we can’t, and the things we wish to keep for ourselves forever never stay hidden.
As the snow drifts down in silky spirals, I contemplate life. I have come so far. I am a college student attending a revolutionary college that has it’s problems, but is making progress. I just want to do something that matters. I want things to be uncomplicated. I want to be allowed to write all the time. I want to be allowed to study grammar and read Lynne Truss all day long and not be afraid of money. Why does my passion have to be tied to future wealth? Why can’t I be ignorant and just revel in it and love it and write beautiful things that people admire? My life is like this snow here. It’s swirling and changing direction with the wind. I want to be free from society’s constraints. I want to be able to enjoy my life doing the things I love rather than be miserable doing something that supports me, but I hate. I want to write. I want to get tangled up in the beauty of words. I want to write and write and write.
I think this is beautiful. Today is a very contemplative day. This makes me want to write all day and just forget everything else.
I have returned to college. It was great to reconnect with The View, and have our usual tea party again. I had missed that a lot. But, it was a good break too. I was glad to stay with my grandparents (the ones who didn’t understand the pronoun thing.) It was a bit sad too, though. While I was home visiting, I got to see my grandparents’ new house. They had lived in the old house over twenty years. My childhood was spent in that house. My mother grew up in that house. My freaking cat is buried under one of the trees that is at that house! I mean, I have so many memories of that place. But, you know, it hadn’t hit me when I saw their new house. We went to go visit my great-grandmother’s house that was right next door. This house was also a big part of my childhood. So, as we drove past Pappy’s old house where we used to have our Christmases and our family dinners and our warm summer crab feasts (even though I hate crabs!!), I was not too upset. It wasn’t until we came to Grandma and Pop’s house that it hit me.
Pappy had us (my siblings and I) walk around the house, going into every room to check for leaks from the weather. As we wandered around, I was filled with this sense of loss, almost. Like, as soon as I walked through the door of that house, I smelled that smell. You know, that smell, the musty smell but it’s a warm smell. It’s familiar and beautiful and you have known it since you were born. To others, it probably just smells like an unused, moth-ball infested, dank house. To me…to me, it is memories. It is Grandma in the kitchen, cooking us God knows what. It is Pop sleeping in the living room with a Yankees game on. It is my cousin and I playing house and dress-up in the guest room. It is digging around in the cellar, collecting all the potatoes Grandma had planted there. It is the warmth of the old cat they used to have, that rubbed up against me, purring. It is my uncles and I playing basketball by the barn right next to the house with that old, wire rim someone had surely made themselves. It is the wind in my ears on a long summer day, while I am swinging from the swing that Pappy made which used to be hanging from that crazy-looking tree. It is the taste of honeysuckle on my tongue, giggling with my uncles on hot, sunny days. It is the excitement I felt when the whole family would go outside to play kick-the-can, and the hope that I had that maybe this time I would win! It is the image of Grandma leaning over and picking flowers in the backyard, and the feel of the cow’s tag between my fingers (which someone told me was a fancy cow earring.) It is the fun, it is the laughter, it is the love. That smell. And, so as my sister and I sat in Pappy’s truck while my brother and he finished something, through the snow flurries rushing by the window in front of my face, I gazed at that old, broken home. I thought of these things and I thought of my family and how so much has changed. I thought of the happiness and the love and the wonderful things that we did there. Little things. Images. They flashed before me as I sat there, cold and shivering. I looked at the house. The swing connected to the tree is gone. The chicken coop where we would sometimes hide in during a great game of hide-and-seek, is gone. The barns where we would explore and have to be very careful of snakes, were sagging. The basketball hoop was missing. The honeysuckle bushes that used to climb up the fence like ivy were long dead. The cows had been sold a long time ago. The flowers were gray and brittle. The house itself was sad. And yet, I could think of nothing but what it had been like when people had lived there. It was beautiful. It was then that I realized how lucky I had been and how I should have appreciated it more.