Saturday, March 6, 2010

(Day 3 Vacay) A Half-Lived Girl In A Polka Dot Dress

I had just come from an out-of-town funeral.
I had dead people on the brain.
One of you should have stopped me.

I knew the place. I knew it well. More than twenty-five years had passed. Still, I knew it well.

Now before you think I randomly descend upon properties unannounced with my camera and notepad I so do that and risk trespassing incarceration, let me explain.

And besides, Monet had an impression to paint in the door glass above (don't you see it?) It was a sign.
And I had a story to tell.

I called the previous tenant who was not the owner my first mistake to see if anyone would mind my nosy news skirt and he said, "No. No one has lived there in years. Just be careful." I hoped they wouldn't mind. It was literally a mile off the highway, thick brush and cornfield roads, and I, in my funeral clothes which were anything but black, a loaded camera...

and memories
I'd laughed in this house. Cried in this house. Seen death in this house. Sang in this house. Weddings. Wakes. Parties. New Year's. Christmas trees in each room in this house. Kissed by the fire in this house.
Climbed the mahogany stairs in this house.
Loved in this house.

Oh I knew there were ghosts, real and imagined, floating about in the oak trees above, peeking through the broken windows and cobwebs. Briars and snake grass, dilapidated steps and peeling paint, rotten boards, sagging roof. It bore little resemblance to the beautiful sprawling old 2-story home with real wooden floors and an elegant polished staircase. The lady of the house kept it spotless she did. The rose bushes had died and all the flowers - almost - were but a whiff on the breeze in my mind. I wanted, I find some.

And besides, have you ever known me to run from a memory?
Look....just look....what I found.

You know I had to.

It had been waiting all these years for my return.

For one afternoon I was eighteen.

...sitting under the protection of my wise and omnipresent friend whose careful watchful wisdom transcended the quiet diversion my life's journey took.

We knew each other well. Steady. Wise. Massive. Strong. Listening. Absorbing. Affirming. Holding me and my swing and my memories just fine.
Old friends always do.
Don't ask me how but I know we heard the music up the creaky old stairs and I danced a dance of memory bold while he nodded and witnessed the precarious passing of time through the eyes of a half-lived girl in a polka dot dress

who knows that she knows that the most important tentacles never change and that somehow the girl is still laughing in that polished house and always will 'cause love buried down that deep never goes too far.

She still looked familiar standing in the Monet. Eons of time .....opening and closing, fleeing and finding.
I knew her. I knew her well. Maybe all had changed.
Except the strength of the trees
the smell of the bark
the swish of my skirt
And roots

that go deep in my heart

Story from June 2009
That's it for Day 3: Mimi Vacay

Photography credit: Mimi Lenox
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Travis said...

You scared me with that little pencil skirt adventure, you know? But all turned out well, and we have these amazing words.

Starrlight said...

Those are some awesome pictures, Missy.

Melody! said...


Long time, no talk to!

That is beautiful!


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