The Bridge of Time and Promise

dear friends.. i felt the need to write some prose while i worked on the co write poems i mentioned in my last post, the song was chosen not for the title or video but for the close your eyes experience.
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The Bridge of Time and Promise
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Chaos was the default setting in my family. The earliest memory of my uncertain future, was me sitting in the sturdy chrome legged high chair that provided a perfect mezzanine level view of the kitchen table. From the relative safety of that private perch sitting plush as a prince behind my oversized formica tray, I could hear and see everything.

It was a cruel foreshadowing of how I would eventually view the world.

Wednesday meant spaghetti and meatballs for dinner, and not ’50’s style Americanized Chef Boyardee spaghetti either. No, not in our house. I can remember watching for hours while my mom made the meatballs, prepared the ingredients and slow cooked the deep red fragrant sauce on the stove. With her large spoon disappearing into the open topped aluminum pressure cooker to take a sip then dolloping some into my plastic bowl, I was a red saucy mess by dinnertime

Though I was much too young and preoccupied as curious kids are,
to understand exactly what all the words I heard actually meant, I knew something was amiss that night. Kids learn by repetition and it wasn’t until my personal spaghetti feast was suddenly interrupted by a very loud thwack followed by my father yelling at the top of his lungs, did I realize the words ‘not good enough’ was…uhm, not good.

From what I could gather, his ‘not good enough wife’ had once again tried to cook a ‘not good enough sauce’, not like his mother would make it and said sauce and spaghetti ended up on the ceiling in so furious a motion, my mom and I sat in stunned mouth agape awe.

Lost in my kid reverie of seeing something new for the very first time,
I don’t recall hearing the plate crash down on the table but the white porcelain shards were everywhere. The inevitable commotion and chaos trailed quickly down the hallway without so much as a glance from me, I just couldn’t take my eyes off that Rorschach red splatter on the low ceiling.

So there I sat in our little kitchen alone in my high chair, howling with laughter as one by one a spaghetti strand would peel away from the ceiling only to flutter and plop on the linoleum floor.

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Apparently the spaghetti was cooked to perfection, al dente pasta will cling if you toss a strand on the ceiling; an old school trick I learned from my few years as a chef. The recipe is memorized now I’ve made it so many times though I wish just once, mom could have slow cooked
it for her grandchild. Shining that red saucy face grin, my daughter has been happily wearing that sauce since she was in her own high chair.

Mom deserved to live that memory… the world and our lives are less that she didn’t but the regret has tempered with time, and knowing mom would have been tickled that her recipe was still being savored.

And there is solace in knowing the weight of her life has lifted some,

that the generational abuse in our family finally ended with me…

a promise I whispered in my daughter’s ear

the miracle night she was born.

in whatever I have or may succeed,

I find joy in the vast and

tranquil oceans of her innocence.

and my life’s full reward

witnessing the budding dreams

of clean and open sky…

of song and flights of angels soaring…

of pure… in her adolescent eyes.
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as the Universe intended.
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reaching cheerful shores

and we are finally here
returning once again to the lake of memories.
the houseboat secured, knots tied to
those four familiar, barkless trees worn smooth, standing
on steep jagged shore of the cove we call our own.
signaling another summer warming to its inevitable end,
another year a family tradition fulfilled. our
simple food, and spirits shared with
an ever expanding family of friends, like a rippling
through calm waters, radiating, a
rolling slow motion of fingers reaching
cheerful shores. smiles and our laughter filter through
the cabins, reside at tables, float
lazily like brightly colored rafts in clean water. and
even us, who have taken this trek year after year, unapologetically
join the newly invited, still marvel at the serenity here, the endless loop of
siience that never begins and sees no end….. and can still
gasp at the Blue Heron flying weightless and
closer than it did last year,
preening just for us on
a narrow and slick stretch of pebbles
in this year of high water.

and could
this first night end any better?
huddled under the canopy sheltered
from the sudden downpour, flashlights illuminating
a spontaneous waterfall cascading down
the steeply sloped, stone bank
us all giggling like kids.

when Scout and i finally snug
in our cozy step down cabin,
stroking her hair drifting her to sleep
the gentle rhythm of love’s deep breathing
the only sound in this endless loop of silence

our old truck

‘conversation with you
was like a drug
it wasn’t your face
so much as it was your words’
Lucinda Williams

the farm 019

with light in my shadows
and cuts soft through my circles
you keep me from falling once again
but your words always did that for me

like that very first time
sitting in my old pick up truck
listening to Lucinda’s twang tell us
why we didn’t want that night to end

only you could convince
this shy boy to sing harmony
when it was your perfect voice
all i ever really wanted to hear

and my muraled furniture met
your folk art painted window panes
we got poor when greed burned the economy
chasing dreams i got crushed in its crossfire

‘We are not selling that truck!’
oh darlin’ you didn’t have to shout
everything i could ever hope to know about you
i would have heard your devotion in a whisper

and now our old truck
is getting some love in return
we shared these past ten years
and when she comes back
all painted blue and purrin’
wait for me again to turn the corner
from the side window like you did

and darlin’,
snuggle up against me
on that old bench seat
let’s listen to our song windows down
summer and hope blowing through our hair

talk to me like poetry
its essence of our love in your glance
and every word knows when to be
we can talk again ’til dawn
yeah, we can just drive all night long

reblogged to 20 Lines A Day