Like most homes with kids, bedtime meant stories. In our house, it was tall tales and ghost stories told by my dad.
Learning how to cast shadow puppets against the wall, and tales of shooting and twinkling stars were my favorites. Especially if we had just seen it from the varandah before bedtime. Then, there were the magical tales of the moon. Always the moon.
Ellie and Portia always wanted to know why did the cow jump over the moon? Also, what was the man in the moon doing while this was happening? To this my dad always had an answer, a different one everytime, and more fantastical than the last. Ellie and Portia would get really quiet. Those two – “…In their dreams they sleep with the moon… “
For Prosery Monday over at dVerse Poets Pub hosted by Merril where the rule is to use this line in your prose, no alterations, in no more that 144 words.
I was never really a particularly chatty person. I always had my nose in a book, and I could never abide foolishness much. I was more interested in capturing catapillars and watching them change. Looking back, It felt like even as a child I was an old soul.
This, coupled with parents who were always at each others throat didn’t leave much time for celebrations. Especially not of birthdays. I don’t remember ever having a birthday party when I was young. That was never a big thing at our house. There were more pressing needs.
I do remember it being a day of protest, or acting up on my part. Thinking on this day I was somehow immune. The problem was my mom didn’t much abide foolishness either. So usually with my acting up, I got the order to “go pick a switch”. Birthday or no birthday.
new butterfly soars
on the wings of summer wind –
the nature of change
For dVerse Poets Pub where it is haibun monday and the prompt is “Birthday”.
Kim is hosting. Come do some reading or paticipate here.
For Tanka Tuesday over at Colleen’s where it’s Poet’s choice this week. Stop by and do some reading or join in here.
Mother Bea sits in her wooden rocking chair on the rickety varandah. She is placed there every morning. She does not walk. She must be over 80 years old. Even her kids were old. When you are little, everybody is old! I watch her as she watches the daily interactions of the children in the yard. She would make one word prouncements on the goings-on.
Cry baby. Smart. Determined. Thick skull. I often wondered how she arrived at these critiques from such a distance. And more often, just who she was talking about!
at times it’s futile
figuring out which spirit
whisper the loudest
in their attempts to guide me –
probably pointless, thick skull!
For Colleen’s Weekly Tanka Tuesday
Where the prompt is synonyms for :
Ghost & Hollow
The things we do on our own as kids, is at times amazing. And sometimes, if we’re lucky, it stays with us.
I don’t even remember how old I was. But I remember the lesson in school had been about caterpillars turning to butterflies. There had always been caterpillars on the bush behind our house. So, I set out to observe this up close. I caught a caterpillar off a leaf. I started by putting it in a cardboard box. But I couldn’t see anything because he kept hiding under the leaves I’d put in with him. Then, I moved it to a jar with holes in the lid that I’d put in with a nail. Afterall, a caterpillar had to breathe.
I was the first one up at twilight to see what was going on in that jar. I watched it change from a caterpillar, to a chrysalis, to a butterfly.
Then It was time to set it free. Watching that butterfly fly away made me feel like a proud parent. The odd thing was, I felt no sadness seeing it go. Just a sense of wonder every time. What it must feel like to have wings to fly…