I’m back from vacation. The day I got back I saw a quote that so represented my time away.
“No man needs a vacation so much as the person who has just had one.” Edward Hubbard
I’ll just say, for now, that it was not a relaxing time and I came home with a strained back (either muscular or a displaced vertebra) and haven’t been worth much all week. On Monday I’ll share more about our camping trip with kids and grandkids. For today I’m sharing a guest post from a great lyrical memoirist in my writing group. Please welcome Karen Wickham.
Ode to Apricot
By Karen Wickham, ©July, 2012
Apricot, taste of summer
But only if fresh picked and eaten by the picker
Aroma of a tiny farm on a dirt country road
Peach Avenue, Sherman Oaks, California
Apricot, essence of my childhood
Straddling branch of an apricot tree, I viewed our one bedroom tiny home, along with chickens, goats, ducks, cats, big brother Nels, baby Jon, dog Daisy June and whatever else wandered in.
Apricot , velvety, soft, yet firm, furrowed like a baby’s bottom.
Color of blushing sunshine fits perfectly in a small hand
Apricot tree, reared me, planted within me my adoration of trees.
Sacred sisters, majestic sentinels guard my earth path still, in pine/fir woodland
From Dallas wasteland, steel and concrete, I ventured to Oregon in search of trees.
Apricot, small, sweet, succulent juiciness, one bite heavy with memories.
My brother and me selling apricots on the busy street near our house.
Hammock gently rocking my small girl dreams of “someday…”,
Back and forth, back and forth, back and forth..
Sleeping outside on cots, waking to sun in our eyes, delicious warmth.
Spinning stories in grapevine cave, arboring my secret solitude.
Chasing pet goat Pete, caressing cat Isabel
Crawling on hands and knees in vacant lot, creating trails in sweet tall grasses.
My mother standing on the front porch my father built,
Wearing her apron, calling us to supper. No one wears an apron anymore.
Apricot sumertime memories. Sobbing while washing dishes this morning.
My grief feels new, raw
How is it Mama is not here? She would have time at last, with Daddy gone.
I miss her
Can’t we hang out together now,
Two wise women shelling nuts and sharing biddy intimacy?
Poignant longing. How can she no longer be?
The one who birthed, cared for, adored me?
I miss her powerfully.
Apricot memories ripen. Does she see? Can she know?
Time has no meaning
She left us yesterday, packing with her part of me.
23 years ago.
Karen Wickham July 2012
Note: I went searching for apricots recently (June) in California with son, Jonathan. We found orchards ripe with apricots. Oh joy! I hoped my stash would not be confiscated at the airport. It wasn’t. Yum!
Are there smells, sounds or sensations from your childhood that pull you into a nostalgic mood as you recall details. Have you ever thought about putting those remembered thoughts and feelings down on paper or into your computer?