"When dawn spreads its paintbrush on the plain, spilling purple... ," Songs of the Pioneers song from TV show "Wagon Train." Dawn on the mythic Santa Fe Trail, New Mexico, looking toward Raton from Cimarron. -- Clarkphoto. A curmudgeon's old-fashioned newspaper column, cross-breeding metaphors and journalism and art, for readers in 150 countries.

Thursday, May 11, 2017

Mother's Day journey--a reunion


Mother’s Day is a reunion. And though Mom’s been dead a long time, it still is for me, in memories and more.

The fading color photograph on my shelf must be almost 40 years old.

Six sets of smiling eyes focus on the camera. All but one set are young, very young. Grandchildren’s eyes gathered around Granny’s eyes.

Mom, our four kids and my brother’s and his wife’s baby daughter are sitting on the floor. Mom’s holding the baby in the cradle of her arm, but everybody is smiling.

Having a good time, soaking up the attention—a moment of happiness frozen in time.

      The kids are grown now, and Mom’s been dead for almost 37 years. I look around my room and see a couple of other snapshots…one of Mom and Dad back when I was a kid; one with my brother on a fence, me standing by Mom on a windy day when I was a college student in Oklahoma; one of Mom’s retirement party.

Happy moments. Happy memories.

This Mothers’ Day will bring more happy moments in many homes. There will be flowers, and meals, and well-wishes, and smiles.

At OCC
 I know Mothers’ Day is to honor mothers, but I think we get most of the benefit.

We move so fast these days that it’ll be an effort to slow down for a few hours, and enjoy those around us. We need to stop and say, “I love you, ” while we can. To laugh, to hug, to tell stories, to just do nothing but enjoy time together.

 Those are other reasons to celebrate Mothers’ Day.

My reunion will be an annual pilgrimage to the Waurika, Oklahoma cemetery to plant flowers and talk. 
My brother and I met there for one of those reunions a few years back. “I wonder if anyone will plant flowers at our graves,” he asked. That went unanswered, but we had our reunion, full of memories and laughs and tears. Then we went our separate ways. This week, when this photo was found, he said, "You had the pooch and I was trim. Now I've got the pooch." We have our mother's humor.

      If you follow custom and have a white flower corsage on your lapel because your mother is gone, make sure those who have red flowers and their mothers still here take full advantage of the day. Make sure children and grandchildren and spouses tell their mothers how much they love them.

This is one day when we can control time for a little, with what is important, before time takes over again.

And by the way, make sure you take lots of pictures Sunday. Because when time does take over, and the red flowers change to white, those snapshots of smiling eyes focused on the camera, which you took this Mothers’ Day, will be more important than you can ever imagine. They're part of a reunion.

Tell your mother you love her.

     


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