Thursday, October 21, 2010

Letters never sent.

Dear Library,
I love you. Even though you don't always have the books I want.

Your Devoted Friend,

Dear Young Man Who Works at My Library,
Why, yes. I was afraid to approach the front desk where you were stationed and ask you if any of my holds were in the back. It's nothing against you personally, I have a slight apprehension of almost all young men. {Don't ask.}
And - I really can form a sentence that doesn't contain the word 'um'; I was nervous!

Sheepishly yours,

Dear Onion I Chopped for Dinner the Other Night,
Well, I'm glad to know my tear ducts are still in perfect working order.
But, was being that pungent really necessary??

Tearfully yours,

Dear Very-Pregnant Woman Who Goes to Our New-ish Church,
The first time I saw you, I greatly admired your extremely long, blonde hair.
Why, oh, why did you cut it short and dye it red?

With regret,

Dear Little Boy Who Sat in Front of Me at the Theater,
I must say, I liked your hat an awful lot! That style is usually worn by old men, but it complemented your 5 year old self quite adorably. {I don't really know your age, of course. But you can't be much older than 5.}

Your Secret Admirer,


Sunday, October 17, 2010

Some of the beautiful things.

Just when her life was the most sodden with disappointments that it had ever been...
When she felt the only thing she wanted to do was slip into a fading nothingness; an anonymous grave....
Just when she had forgotten there is hope...
Then, she discovered it: the preservation of the things that made her happiest.
She collected empty bottles & jars and in them stored her treasures.

{Extract of sunshine; spice of the wind on an autumn noon.}

She set these containers on a shelf in an alcove in her kitchen, labeling them with a meticulous hand.

{Salt tasting of ocean breezes; essence of a feathery kiss.}

Pride welled in her heart when she surveyed the neat lines of her assorted riches. Lovingly, she would run her fingers along their varied surfaces. Some warm, some cool.

{Decanters full of intoxicating moonlight-infused water, gathered from a lake at midnight.}

With a careful reverence, she dusted them every day.

{A jar full of the fog that seems to creep from the forests and settle in the roads.}

Every day her collection grew, for now her senses were opened and she found beautiful things everywhere she went.

{Bottle upon bottle filled full of the infectious giggles of the little boy who lived down the street.}

All these years, she had mechanically fed her body but starved that thing inside her. The thing inside everyone that is sustained by the abstract & beautiful things of life.
She had forgotten you need more than physical sustenance to keep one's soul alive.
But, now she has remembered... and her life has never been more dear to her.

Friday, October 8, 2010

confessions of a girl who loves to sing.

She stands on a stage in front of her audience, wearing the dress she only wears for them.
Hands by her side, smiling that secret smile; she sings with the confidence she only feels around them.
They adore her. They hang onto her every note, mesmerized by her music
Before them, she can sing out loud and unrestrained.
She holds out her arms, giving them things she gives to no one else.
Holding her hands wide open, she receives what they alone can give her.
When she curtsies they clap loud and unrestrained.
"More!" they cry. "Encore!" they beg.
She's never been known to turn them down.
They understand. They understand the songs she sings for them.
Her performances for them are unparalleled.
So clearly she feels their respectful presence,
is it any wonder that she forgets she's just a girl...
standing on a chair in her high-ceilinged kitchen.
All alone except for the echo of her own voice.

{Picture of: St. Vincent.}

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Winter... or summer?

My favourite season is upon us!!!
As much as I love the carefree flavor of summer, I prefer autumn. And yes, even winter is preferable to summer. {Spring is marvelous too but it only lasts for about three days here!}
I don't know why, I love the crisp autumn months and the frosty days of winter. I feel that there are so many delicious opportunities to feel cosy when it is chilly out. Cold days mean hot cocoa & soup, dancing fires, and snuggling into blankets with a favourite book.
Though, my cynical self is saying it also means school, winter doldrums and frozen fingers & toes. {My cynical self likes to put a damper on things! I try to ignore her.}
In my opinion, summer is too hot. I have always thought it is much easier to make yourself warm when you are cold then to make yourself cold when you are too warm.
I was delighted to find that my favourite author, Bess Streeter Aldrich, believed this to be true as well. In a book of her short stories called Journey into Christmas, she shares a few of her memories in the last chapter, aptly entitled 'I Remember'. This is one of them:

'...And in a higher grade there was the first experience in debating. The procedure was explained, including the new words "affirmative" and "negative". The question to be debated was: Resolved, that winter is better than summer. I was affirmative. And what's more the leader of the affirmative. Came the great day and I went to the front of the room. "Ladies and gentlemen," I began, at which there was a faint titter proving that my appellation had been chosen unwisely. But I was firm with them. "Ladies and gentleman," I repeated. "You can always get yourself warm on a cold winter day, but you can't never get yourself cool on a hot summer day." Maybe my earnest glibness caused the outburst, or maybe it was their pent-up emotion, but everyone broke into laughter. And the teacher said: "Sit down. This wasn't meant to be funny. If you can't think of good reasons, don't give any." I sat down. Funny? I had no more intention of being funny than Douglas did when he debated with Lincoln. Through all the years - at least until air conditioning became known - I have never changed my mind that you could always get yourself warm on a cold winter day but could never get yourself cool on a hot summer day.'

It's always so nice to know the authors we love share similar thoughts and ideas with us. {Looking back, I realize, I may have mentioned Bess Streeter Aldrich an inordinate amount of times... What can I say, she is my favourite author!}

{Painting: "Stapleton Park near Pontefract" by John Atkinson Grimshaw}