small silent days

I'm having a few small silent days right now. It's a blessing. I'm grateful for the solitude.

In total silence I walked to the great Mississippi River yesterday in mid afternoon, fur trapper's hat tied under the chin to keep out the unusually cold temperature and the wind.

I had my favorite pruning shears, the small ones that fit in the palm of your hand, bright red handles.

I got to a place along the walking path where I've seen some fierce wild grape vine choking the life out of every sapling that gets in it's way. 

I thought I would liberate a few small trees and in the process make myself a couple of grape vine wreaths for the front and back of Rob's house.

I had a great time yanking the vines down out of the tree branches. The vines send out these tiny tendrils that wrap several times around anything they grab hold of. They reminded me of how even a very new human baby will wrap it's little fist around your finger and not let go.

I cut several vines down low and then yanked and yanked, threw my weight into it, caused a bit of a commotion along the path, inspired one much older lady than myself to come over and "help" by holding some of the lower tree branches out of the way for me so I could get a better angle on my yanking.

Plants are funny. People are funnier.

I loved being outside, I had to untie my fur hat because I got so warm fighting with the grape vines in the trees.

Eventually I had two very large bundles of vine that I wrapped up like big coils of chicken wire, two massive circles, and I slung one over each shoulder of my long shearling coat and walked home.

What an interesting character I must have looked like then! A woman in tall leather boots, a big shearling coat, a fur hat, and a mass of curling twigs and branches slung over each shoulder, walking down the side of the neighborhood street.

I deposited the vines in Rob's front yard and then jumped in my Jeep. I went up to my favorite real old fashioned Americana style hardware store just a few blocks away and bought white lights on white strings for the two wreaths.

When I got back I stood out in Rob's front yard for a long time with a spool of hemp twine, tying the vines together until they looked somewhat, but not too, civilized. It was getting dark when I went inside to warm up, so I didn't go back out to finish.

Today I'm going to get bundled up again and go out to put the lights on them both.

I couldn't be more excited to have them up, like smiles on Rob's house for all to see.

I want to tell you, that there was a time, when I was in my twenties, that I didn't like to even pass through neighborhoods where people lived in tidy houses, raising families.

I used to say, often and to everyone, that I hated looking into the windows of the houses because of what I thought I was seeing.

I would say that if the house looked all fixed up for the holidays, then I knew that meant that some mother was throwing all her self worth into making her house look cozy and cheerful, but that her efforts often belied a deep unhappiness she was trying to cover up.

I would also say that I didn't like to look at the houses with no decorations and the shades drawn because I knew what private torment, what personal anguish was unfolding in houses like that.

Well, forget about it! I was wrong! There are people out here just having fun! And glory be to God I am one of them! Making my grape vine wreaths and putting on the holiday cheer!

I also drove up to the grocery store and overdrew my checking account buying $150 worth of groceries for my children's impending arrival. 

It'll all work out, I know it will.

And we'll have the big bird in the oven just like all the rest of the noble brave who scratch out a living and wring every drop of love and joy out of the moments they are given.

Thanksgiving in America is a holiday fraught with tainted history. I'll take the best of it's meaning and leave the rest for others to beat their breasts over. And when Christmas comes, another holiday tainted with all sorts of kill joy facts and realizations, I will do the same.

I am glad to be alive. I'm glad I have people to love, and people to cook for.

And I'm glad I have a window to hang a wreath in and light it up for all to see, hoping that they will take cheer in knowing that there are good souls who take the time to shine a light into the dark days of on coming winter and make the world a little brighter.

My best wishes to you today where ever you are.


Courtney Yasmineh November 21, 2018 @08:04 am
Josephine! Love!
Josephine Lane November 20, 2018 @10:34 am
Thank goodness for souls like you in this world who want to shine.
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