November 02, 2009

Just One More Time...

I just read a comment left on a post I did… My cousin said that she wished that things could be like that just one more time. That, as you would expect, set me wandering through the nebulous memories that fly around in my mind.

As I have said before one of my greatest wishes would be to stand at the curve in the road that leads down to my grandparents old home on the morning of July the 4th and take it all in, with my wife and children next to me. I would stand there and utilize all of my senses to be awash in the physical manifestation of the memories of that place and time. The hickory smoke filling that hollow, the smell of the bbq as it slowly comes time for it to be eaten. The blue of the sky and the green of the grass as countless children, before being encumbered by knowledge, are free to really enjoy what life has to offer. The sounds of laughter as they run round and round the little house for no apparent reason other than to celebrate simply being alive. My grandfathers booming voice as he relays instructions for the preparation of the food, my grandmother constantly asking everyone if they have had enough to eat. My fathers voice, as he sits by the fire with my uncles, telling stories of times long since gone. The youthful faces of my siblings as they laugh and eat themselves too full to move with food that simply put, was so good that it can not be found anywhere now. Standing at the table in front of the huge washtub full of lemonade that Woodson had made, impatiently waiting for a turn to fill a cup with the ice cold beverage, while covered with dust and sweat brought on by the ungodly heat and humidity that only a proper Georgia summer can provide.

Hide and seek, firecrackers, bottle rockets, incredible food, laughter… its all right there. Just down the road. My God… what a treat for my children to see and experience this… I would send them all forward with a gentle push, secure in the knowledge of what they were about to experience. I could imagine my son James running full speed to my grandfather and climbing into his lap to listen to his pocket watch, just as I had done. I think of that and I can not help but to weep that they will never know that man. They will never listen as he and my grandmother talk at the same time, neither seemingly aware that the other is talking, and all you can do is jump in and hang on, hoping that you can keep up with both conversations. More than anything what I long for is my wife and children to experience is the feeling of complete love and security that they had the ability to create. As effortless as taking a breath, with no thought or plan they would make you feel as if you were the most important person in the world. To have known love like that is truly the greatest thing a human could wish for, trust me… I know.

I would sit crouched down in that curve of the road as I watched them walk down there and see the way that my grandparents would welcome them in. I would watch from a distance as I saw my kids run to my dad and hug him for all they were worth. I would get to see my kids eating slaw from the blue bowl that my aunt brought with her every year. I could imagine Patrick watching and listening as my dad talked and James walking in lock step right behind my grandfather.. I know he would be simply awe struck over Daddy Doc.. I would walk around the perimeter of that place and just watch.. just take it all in…


Just one more time indeed… One more time to be wrapped in love that way... Damn…

3 comments:

John Pender said...

If I crouch in the curve of a road a truck will come.

Just me... said...

I love the way you recount your memories.. :):)

Matt-Man said...

Very nicely penned Clay. Very Nice indeed. Cheers to you and your memories!!