Saturday, April 27, 2013

In the Garden


Me with my grandmother at her house.


  When I put down the phone I still heard her voice in my head, "We've had a rough week." What did my grandmother mean by that statement?


My sister playing in the woods behind their home.
 "The Grands" as my sister and I call them, are two of my best friends in this whole world. I know them well. They know me well.

 Together, we can love and care for one another in a poignant, life changing way. That love seems to run a little deeper than other loves I've tasted, which I like to imagine is due to the fact that our very blood whispers the knowings we share.

When I arrived to the home that still houses the magic and memory that helped hone my identity, I found my grandparents to be unwell.

It had been a rough week.
The whimsical garden my grandmother keeps.

My grandmother answered the door with that eleven shaped wrinkle in her forehead pinched so tight it didn't seem like her face at all. Her eyes were wide with anxiety and unanswered questions. 

Moments passed as they untangled the events which led up to the strain on their faces. 

I was present. I observed. I didn't know what else to do.

Tulip Magnolias, she calls them.
 Somehow, in the midst of all this, we managed to entice my grandmother to eat with us even though she wasn't up to it. Then she marveled at how much water she craved. It wasn't long before she accepted my invitation to grab some vitiamin D and step outside.

Our "walk around the yard" turned into a hike to the "branch" (branch means creek where I am from). We sat on the stone bench overlooking the tall pines and kudzu. She told me stories. She reminded me that when I was born and she saw me for the first time I turned to her voice. She reckoned that I knew her right away.


Wonder why I paint trees?

We puttered three loops around the yard and marveled at every azela that was in bloom. Their gardens were aflame with pink, red, and purple blossoms. 

I turned to face her as she taught me how to root the mint I pulled up. To my delight I knew her once more.

Her wrinkles melted into smiles, her cheeks blossomed like the azaleas showing off their pinky glow, her eyes were blue with laughter and confidence. 

Just in that moment the sunlight caught the halo of her curls that burned white against the sky and she beamed with pure, grandmotherly love. 

"You have totally transformed right before my eyes. You look completly different from when I arrived. All you needed was some time in your garden!" I pronounced.

She smiled, put her arm around me,"All I needed was time with you."

She blossomed before my very eyes.