Daily Prompt: Shelf

Ash and Chompers

My eldest, Ashley with Chompers, her first gift from her Nana

The moment I saw Today’s prompt, I knew what I would write about.  This is a poem representing the word “shelf”.

I was sitting in Cracker Barrel, with many just like me

Just wondering if I would ever have a home

When as I pondered this, I felt myself airborne

Oh no, please not a child whose left to roam

The torture never ends for us, the bruises and the nicks

Not to mention sticky fingers and the floor

But this time, the touch felt different. Should I dare to harbor hope?

Can it be as Grandpa said?  Could there be more?

I stole a glance at my captor’s face, and she returned my smile

She held me out to have a look, to ponder me from afar

She said, “This one is perfect, I knew it from the start

Before I knew it, I’d been purchased and was riding in her car.

Or course I was ecstatic, and couldn’t wait to see my home

She took me to a room all filled with flowers and love

A beautiful, tiny baby slept, a sight she was to see

It was then I knew for sure that I had been blessed from above.

When I was new, my coat did shine, my clothes they were pristine

My eyes were bright and bore no scratches from wear and tear

I was gifted by this Nana to this amazing baby girl

Oh the fun that we would have, the love we’d share

I kept her warm on chilly nights and was always there to hug

As the years flew by, she took me everywhere she went

She grew up fast and stayed so busy, I didn’t see her as much

Though our time together grew less and less, I knew how much I meant

Even though I am old and torn, she has keep me all these years

And she used to pick me up to reminisce,

To think upon our memories, the days and nights of fun

Lately though, I’m afraid she’s grown remiss

So, I’m waiting patiently for the day that she recalls

One more hug will be appreciated, in and of itself

But until then, I’m sitting here just watching everything

Just wishing and just hoping, on the shelf.

Hold on a minute

Mossy phone booth; Olympic National Park

Mossy phone booth; Olympic National Park

In response to The Daily Post’s writing prompt: “Going Obsolete.”

Of all the technologies that have gone extinct in your lifetime, which one do you miss the most?

Initially, I struggled with this.  Why would I miss cassette tapes that I had to rewind with a pencil, or a television without a remote, or a 7 lb boombox?  The more I thought about it, I realized it’s not the technology I miss, but the time period it represented.  It’s not even just the memories, but the way things just seemed slower and people seemed to have more time for one another.

There are the memories of standing in front of a television, physically removing my little brothers hand off the knob as he tried to change the channel to Creature Feature which I abhorred; the days of listening to the Top 40 so that I could record those favorite tunes; my aunt and uncle recording my little cousin’s voice and sending the tapes in the mail to my grandparents, and who could forget “film strips” in school?

I miss a landline telephone that emitted a busy signal when people were actually tied up.  Imagine a world where the person you were speaking to and your conversation with them was actually important enough where interruption was denied.  How many times in our current culture do you hear “hold on” a minute, at precisely the wrong time?

Then, there is the written word; from the notes sneakily passed in class to the newsy letters received from a pen pal, stamped from a foreign country (mine was from Sweden).  As I looked through a table of books yesterday and my husband asked, “I thought you had a kindle, why do you need to buy those?”, I said, “I love these too.”  I didn’t bother to explain that I love the feel and the smell and the sound of the pages turning because he wouldn’t understand.  He isn’t a lover of reading.   I don’t think books will ever become completely obsolete, but I fear the generations to come might not appreciate them as much as we do.

So, in closing, I miss those days, the slower ones, but at the same time I am grateful for some of the new inventions and discoveries.  I’ve always lamented jokingly that I was born in the wrong generation.  Maybe the older we get, we all think that?  As we age, the memories accumulate and (hopefully) the wisdom and knowledge increase and we realize what’s really important.

My heart

Ashley and Morgan; then and now

Ashley and Morgan; then and now

Chubby little hands, wet with slobber, getting caught in my hair

Up half the night rocking you with a prayer until the fever subsided

Chasing remnants of applesauce around your tiny lips with a tiny spoon

The spoon, now airborne and not because I’m pretending it’s a plane

Bath time;  soggy toys, towels and floors until you were like ten

Drying a wiggle worm until the towel drops and you run away giggling

Treating Boo boos with kisses and rug rat bandages and Neosporin

Riding bicycles and scooters and go karts and four-wheelers

Going to Little league, Church camp, school plays and sleepovers

Checking out library books and Disney movies and The Nutcracker

Reminding daily about baths and brushing teeth and hair

Blond hair whipping in the wind as we caught our share of fish

Driving cars and blasting music and growing up too fast

Never-ending showers that leave the rest of us mad and cold

Little Miss Know It All who doesn’t really have a clue

Late nights, some fights, long talks and lots of prayers

High school, sports, dances and dates

Increasing beauty, decreasing days before graduation and then…..

Empty nest, quiet house, too much time on our hands

Phone calls, holiday visits and lots of texts

Agree to disagree, offer advice but realize my limits

Heart breaks when you feel pain or struggle

Loving you long distance, looking forward to your next visit

Missing you, lots of reminiscing, tears and prayers

Weekly Writing Challenge: Dialogue

Poppy and Granny with Ashley (my youngest)

Poppy and Granny with Ashley (my youngest)

“Lee-see-o, Where are you?” I could hear my grandmothers voice growing louder the closer I got to her back porch.  Granny, complete with silver bun and glasses, was easygoing and lenient, but when dusk fell it was time to go inside.

 “Coming, Gran”, I would yell back as I begin to say my goodbyes as my friends also turned homeward.

Inside?  Already?  After all there were more cartwheels and handsprings to be attempted, games of tag left un-played and more stories to hear and to tell.  Who wanted to go inside with two old people who didn’t own a television?

Well, I did.  I could spin a yarn about how I hung my shoulders down and stuck my bottom lip out and lamented my horrible fate.  But, it’s just not true. 

I remember it more like this.

“Hey Granny!” I would say with a big grin spreading across my dirt-stained face.  “Hey, doll baby, what did you get yourself into?  Come on inside and let’s get you washed up”.

Poppy would be in his favorite chair, reading the newspaper, relaxing after his day as a fishing guide and tending to his garden when he got home.  He didn’t talk as much as granny did, so all I would hear from him for a while was likely to be the rustling sound, as he turned the pages of his paper.

All clean and in my pj’s or jammies as we liked to call them, I would come back into the living room and Poppy would make some funny comment.  He loved to tease his grandkids. 

“Granny made chocolate pie”, I would her say in a sing-song voice from the little kitchen.  She would cut me a hearty slice and we would begin to talk about my day.  Granny always listened more like another kid instead of an adult.  She looked at me, right in the eye, when I was speaking and she didn’t interrupt.  She listened with seemingly rapt attention to every detail. 

Of course, I didn’t realize as a child, how much adults can glean from our ramblings if they just pay attention.  Yes, as I shared my heart, Granny was listening because she loved me, and also so she knew how to pray for me and others.  When I reached my tumultuous teen years, I sometimes resented that she actually had a use for my freely given information, but her motives were always for my good.

Poppy, already having enjoyed his pie right after supper, would get up and give me a hug and a kiss goodnight to meet his early bedtime.  As silly as it sounds, I can still feel the roughness of his cheek and smell that sweet, distinct smell of Poppy.

Oh what I would give to spend one more quiet, pie partaking, newspaper rustling evening with them.  I crave the quiet, the conversation uninterrupted by various electronic devices, sharing the Sunday funnies, the hot tea mornings with toast and jelly.

Poppy is gone now and Granny’s mind isn’t what it used to be, but I treasure all the time I spent with them and the memories that seem like yesterday.  I was blessed to have them and I pray that one day my grandchildren look back at time spent with me and my husband with as much fondness.

 

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