Wednesday, November 10, 2010
When I was a young man of no more than 6 or 7 years, I found the spring.
Nestled in a nook on the northern perch of my Pawpaw's farm, just beneath several old and tired willow trees, it sputtered its way up from the rock and dirt and pooled in the cool afternoon sun. Green ferns bowed their limbs over the crystal clear water. Glistening rocks glimmered with approval at its lip.
I would often make my way through the back pasture, up and over the old wooden fence, and spirit myself away through the corn. I would hover around the edge of the woods until I saw the moss begin creeping over the boulders. The small footpath that led me into the heart of the forest had carried far more little feet than my own.
When the honeysuckle & wild blackberries gave way to shadow and pine needles, I always knew I was getting close. You see, my Pawpaw had taken me to the little spring many times before. And many times before that, he'd taken my Mother.
The gourd hung solemnly and still from a hewed limb, just within the reach of tiny prying fingers such as my own.
With one knee in the soft earth and with one arm outstretched, that gourd swallowed enough sweet water to quench any thirst.
It's one of my fondest memories.
PawPaw passed away in the spring of 1983. The spring dried up the following summer. Several years later, Nannie sold that farm and moved closer to town.
I suppose that gourd is still there, though. Hanging patiently from that limb. Hidden in shadow and beneath pine needles, beyond the honeysuckle & blackberries. Perhaps just out of view of the footpath. Maybe it's simply waiting. On what... well, that's up to you.
Once upon a gourd, indeed.
Friday, November 5, 2010
People will eventually forget everything you've ever said. They will eventually forget everything you've ever done. The one thing they'll never forget, though, is the way you made them Feel while you said and did those things.
If you can close your eyes and fall asleep content knowing that... then you've found the definition of Honor.
It lasts and lingers longer than your own shadow. It's something you cannot sew on and something you cannot wash off.
It will follow you to the grave and it will end up being the only resurrection you'll never know.