The Little Things

Meadow GateWhen I was a child there was a special place I sat in a mindless state. I felt the sun on my skin warming it like toast, felt the gentlest breeze play in my golden hair. Often I heard the buzz of gossamer wings as a sturdy blue dragonfly hovered above the quiet surface of “my” pond. My grandmother had created it from an upturned lid she placed under a dripping spigot. Water seeped evenly over its round edges moistening the ground where spearmint thrived. The heavenly scent was respite for a child who spent her childhood on gray military bases where metal, oil, and booming sounds crowded out life generating forces.

The pond sat below a rolling shoulder of red earth and green grasses. It was mowed neatly by my grandfather who maintained his farm with rigor and pride.  It pitched toward a view of a valley, far down to Aunt Kate’s white house and red barn. Around the edge of the valley, rolling emerald hills met a steel track that brought the howling sound of a steam engine several times a day.

Each year my parents brought us back to my grandparents small farm in Tennessee, in the foothills of the Smoky Mountains. Each year my sisters and I filled up with life forces and then flew off to places far and wide inflated by the little things that nourished us on that sacred ground.

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