Posts Tagged ‘elders

05
Sep
19

Memories…

‘By the time you’re eighty years old you’ve learned everything. You only have to remember it.’   George Burns

23
Jan
15

An elder can’t quite recall how to…..

once visions of wood

strong hands and a nimble mind

created keepsakes for grandkids

now the ravages 

of a stroke and cloudy mind

leave projects sitting still

the memory betrays

table saw, carpenter, shop, SwittersB

31
Jul
14

Recollecting the Past………….

It was a warm, slightly humid night this evening. We sat on the deck gazing East toward the mountains. The clouds were pushing upward and then spilling over into majestic shapes. In the distance, we heard thunder. My father-in-law shook his head, as he often does. It is a prelude to the common themes we share these days. The memory, in the present, falters now. The past memories, recited often, are clearer and bring to mind his struggles as a young man, husband, father, farmer in the Dakotas.

sky-clouds-Summer-photography-SwittersB

He hasn’t farmed in over forty some years. The weather, destroyed crops, fading health and the clarity of the hard future ahead caused him to move the family and contents West to Oregon. Although he never farmed again, his upbringing and young adult life leave little doubt he somehow is still a farmer. He can describe in vivid detail the life, the hardships, the failures from fifty years ago. He can’t recall having given this same story ten minutes ago. No matter. It’s the way of things. You roll with it, staring up at the clouds, thankful the mosquitos are at bay tonight. 

sky-pink clouds-Summer-photography-SwittersB

He looks tired tonight, disheveled. His pants have that faint coating of sawdust from the shop. The belts askew, the shirt partially untucked. His hands, the gnarled, strong hands have never stopped working. He points a crooked finger toward the clearing sky and remarks on the color of the clouds and the threat of something passing. He asks if he has ever told me about why he left the farm? No, I say, what happened? 

I am melancholy in listening. This is a fading life style, a tired man. I want to hear it over and over, while I can. My heart wrenches, I catch my breath and refocus on his words. Every single word.

26
Nov
13

Photography, The Mind’s Eye, Life: Do You See It?

A Reflection SB

Life, Elders, Awkwardness, Shyness, Eye to Eye, Connections, Heart to Heart

Flitting thoughts and images of others passed. Did you see them? Did you truly look?

Passing moments in small talk. Perfunctory small talk, glances and moving on. Do you sense the reflections of time in their eyes? Do you sense something simple and loving beyond small talk and your clinical assessments?

They are here now. Simply show love, patience and something beyond self. Don’t look for the payoff now. Someday will you need more than small talk and passing glances and fleeting connections? Eye to eye. Heart to heart. Give Thanks that you can.




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