Thursday, October 28, 2010

The Dash

It is not the day we are born
nor the moment of our passing
that leaves a lasting mark.
It is the dash inbetween
the life we have lived
that shapes and touches our hearts.

February 15 1922 - August 11, 1992

Parkes Van Horn

My father was a wonderful man who accompllished many amazing things even though he had led a very difficult childhood.  His mother was sick for many years with MS, and passed away when he was merely 9 years old.  By the time he was 11 he was orphaned, and had to live with who ever would take him in.  He started working at the age of 12 as a door to door salesman.  Dispite all of his hardships he eventually went in the Navy as well as the Army, and served in WWII.  He worked his way through college graduating from Rice University in Houston, TX to become a aeronautics engineer.  He practically raised me and my brother by himself, and we never went without.  There is no way that I could ever attempt to fill his shoes, yet his integrity and example have carried me, and continue to move me forward.

Monday, October 25, 2010

Aunt Matilda's Big Purse

Aunt Matilda had a big purse that appeared to be larger than life.
It was wider than a cavern and taller than a kite.
She carried it on her elbow, or clutched it with her wrist.
And if anyone  tried to take it, they would surely receive a fist.
We joked that if you put your hand in, a rabbit would be pulled out.
For magicly she had everything needed to solve a dillemma without a doubt.
One time she sent me to get her wallet for money for the icecream man,
and when I reached inside, I found a set of pots and pans.
Yes, Aunt Matilda had a big purse that was bigger than us tykes.
It was wider than a cavern, and taller than a kite.

What Remains

God gave us memories that we might have roses in December.  ~J.M. Barrie, Courage, 1922

Time burns her memory like a building on flame and my heart keeps re-entering to salvage what could be lost soft cuddles pushes on the swing thoughts shared all return to view I cradle them out of the wreckage with the tenderness of a mother yet fervour of an explorer certain I will retrieve something new that had been once consumed by time's tarnishing way
one vision at a time relinquished like a photograph taken out from underneath the protective glass yet they still fade tattered at the edges and dust inbetween reflecting the weakness of my memory to capture every moment like a camera but I will carry on with the recovery holding on to each one like a child's hand afraid of loosing them out in the open streets for I am the guardian and sole heir of them all and I will carry them with me in homage.

I turned 47 this year; the age my Mother was when she passed away.  I never realized at that time how young she truly was.  She never saw us kids grow up, attended our graduations, had the pleasure of participating in our weddings, or held her grandchildren in her arms.  Now I am very aware of the blessings that I have to see my grown children, and have the opportunity to watch my grandchildren grow up.  When I look at myself in the mirror I do not see the many wrinkles, or all the grey hairs, that seem to accumulate like dust on a picture frame,  I see the reflection of my mother's smile, and her heart that lives on in my life.

Saturday, October 23, 2010

The Soul's Tattoo

The stumblings of our youth can leave a lasting mark
reminding us where we have been and directing us where we are
a source of evidence that lingers for all eyes to behold
a roadmap of the past and still a tattoo of the soul.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

The Glory In Kneeling

There is more strength in letting go of the tears than in all the callus one can hold.
There is more courage in reaching out for help than facing all the demons alone.
There is more power in our silence than all the words we can say.
There is more glory in kneeling in the shadows in prayer
than just standing in the light's way.

Friday, October 15, 2010

A Funeral, Two Soft Giggles, and The Color Orange

One of the most amazing men I have ever known was my son's paternal grandfather, George Thackeray.  He was an intelligent and hardworking man with a heart of gold, but what I loved most about him was his wonderful sense of humor.  He was always telling jokes, being silly, and making you laugh.  He was an utter joy to be around, and I am certain he was the glue that held his family together.  When he passed away back in 1991, it was a deep loss for the whole family.  A wonderful, joyous,and kind soul that we would miss dearly.  His wife whose name is Georgia, remains with us, is also a wonderful soul, and she has always been known for having taste in things that were loud and colorful.  Her favorite color is orange, and she always wears very colorful dresses and likes very big and unusual things.  When we were at the grave side service, the pastor was talking about what George was doing in Heaven.  George had a painting business that supported his family for over 25 years, so the pastor speculated that George could be up in there in Heaven painting a house for Georgia, and then he added probably in her favorite color.  Right about that time, two of my sister-n-laws burst out in soft giggles.  All they could think at the moment was the color ORANGE.  The house would be ORANGE!  You would have to truly know the whole family to understand the beauty of that moment, for it was a sweet legacy of George's wonderful humor that remained here with his family; his spirit was still here with us in our tears and in our laughter as well. 

Tuesday, October 12, 2010


Some things when they fall they shatter and seem beyond repair
while others seem to brace the fall but invisibly they are impaired
a heart can see another's fall and then itself break in two
but tears like glistening diamonds will fall and make it new
God bless the heart that is broken for another's pain it has truly felt and seen
but God help the heart that will not break for it is surely broken indeed.

Friday, October 8, 2010

What The Trees Know

The trees know a certain unity that we do not understand.
They face what the wind blows in, and together they shall stand.
When autumn's wind reaches out to them her subtle hand,
the leaves turn hue and fall and still together they do land.
The forest knows a certain hope that lingers in winter's cold.
It is the certainty of spring when new leaves will all unfold.
Yet, in the swelter of summer, at the hand of man alone,
a flicker becomes a flame and takes back what nature has bestowed.
Still, trees know a certain peace that man cannot recall.
For united they will stand, and still together they will fall.

I have always believed that nature has her own sweet knowing that mankind has not quite grasped.  All of creation thrives and co-exists like an elegant dance to a beautiful song.  It is God's other textbook to teach us how to live, yet we take it for granted, awkwardly disregarding the steps.  If we would only take time to listen to the rustling of the leaves in the breeze, it is then that we could hear God's voice, and we to could learn the dance.


Monday, October 4, 2010

The Keepers And The Swift

When I was an older child, I was fascinated by running my fingers swiftly through the flickering seemed as if my fingers, and the flame for a moment were within each others embrace...but I was careful to not linger...all too aware of the sting that could remain.  Some lovers can be that way...fasinated by the warmth of the embrace, yet they will not linger, for they are afraid of getting burned.

We long for the spark of something more
warmth of light enveloping an empty orb
solitude extinguished and kinship ignited
with one touch of the match onto the wick
yet once the flicker transforms into
a steady flame
a mystery smolders in the light
some hearts will hold the flame true
like a sturdy lamp
embracing the beauty's glow
and it's sting
but like the scattering of dry leaves
some lovers swiftly move on
for fear of getting burned.

I recently went with my husband to his 30 year class reunion.  There were many people there with the same old story; they had married, had children, divorced, and started new families with grandchildren as well.  But amongst the many, there were two couples that had been highschool sweethearts, married in highschool, and were still together to this day.  I became completely fascinated by them.  When I had a chance, I asked one of them what their secret was...she simply replied "we were friends from the start and we are friends now."...but there is more that I can add to this observatiion.  When the music started and the DJ invited the couples to come on down, they were the first couples out there, and when the last song played they were still out there dancing their hearts out. You could tell that they embraced life whole heartedly.  I realize now, they are what you call true "keepers of the flame".