Monday Morning Musings:
“For nature gives to every time and season some beauties of its own; and from morning to night, as from the cradle to the grave, it is but a succession of changes so gentle and easy that we can scarcely mark their progress.”
–Charles Dickens, Nicholas Nickleby
I remember that spring, the winter of despair,
the flow of river into spring again
and again, the earth blooms,
and birds come and go, soaring into clouds
that move across the sky–
the constancy of sun and moon, the ephemerality of life,
insistent green sprigs emerging from driftwood,
bleached and beached.
Each day the same and different,
each sunrise a threshold to the unknown.
In dreams, my mother asks for chocolate–
she says there’s more for them that wants.
This is how it is—
this is who we who are, full of ifs and when
there is both laughter and the aches
of time and memory–
we are here. Now
I watch the bees,
and I remember too late,
to tell them my secrets and wishes–
but perhaps they already know,
telling their own dreams in buzz waltz,
remembering a day of endless sweet nectar,
and brilliant colors that we cannot see,
yet can imagine, reflected
in a sunrise yet to come.
This week has been a strange and strangely beautiful week of clouds, rain, and sunshine. I suppose that’s how August is. We’re supposed to get a return of the high heat and humidity. Yesterday, some family members got together at my sister’s house for the first time since the pandemic. It wasn’t everyone, and even though it was right before my mom’s birthday, it wasn’t really a memorial, though we did have a Sunday brunch fish tray, with fruit, and my Mandelbrot and brownies for dessert. For those who don’t know, we used to have lox and other smoked fish with cream cheese and bagels–plus a whole lot more–fairly often when I was growing up. Every so often, my grandfather, my father’s father, would bring the delicatessen food, which also included herring, rye bread, and coffee cake, to my mom’s (even though my parents were divorced). My mom would supply the juice, coffee, boiled red potatoes, and sometimes I’d bake something. Then, it became a special family brunch occasion because it has become very expensive, plus more difficult to get together. Mindful of the Delta strain–even though we’re all vaccinated–we stayed masked indoors, except for when eating—and we tried to stay far apart then. Fortunately, the weather cleared up enough for us to go outside for dessert. My parents were there in spirit and ash.
When we got home, we took a brief walk, and pulling into the driveway were surprised by this.
Merril, I grew up eating much of the same foods. My mouth watered looking at your lovely spread! Your poetry and photos share changes but always the togetherness of nature and the seasons which includes your family. You were blessed to all be together. ❤
Thank you for your lovely comment, Colleen. 💙 I didn’t know you grew up with that type of food, too. It was great to get together, even if it wasn’t the entire family.
That’s wonderful! My family was German-Russians but we ate lox, fish, and many other yummy dishes just like you served at your brunch. ❤️
Oh, well it is German/Russian/Eastern European food, I suppose, not just Ashkenazi Jewish (maybe the bagels?). When we lived in Dallas when I was little, my dad would bring rye bread from Philadelphia. Maybe some other stuff, too. 😀
Cream cheese, bagels, lox, rye bread… now I’m getting hungry. I’ve long suspected there might have been a Jewish connection in our family.
This is so beautiful Merrill!
I’m just seeing you photo “ deer in the headlights “. That’s just mind blowing! 💙
Thank you so much, Rene!
We were so surprised to see that deer!
Such a perfect snapshot. I’m thinking National Geographic material. 😊
Aww–you’re so sweet.
I’m serious ! 💚
Such a beautiful post Merril, full of nostalgia and poignancy. The brunch you describe sounds just wonderful!
Thank you very much, Ingrid. It was good to get together, even if it wasn’t the entire family. And of course, that food was delicious. My sister sent us home with packages. 😋
Thank you, Merril, for your beautiful posts. They are reminders that beauty is everywhere, even in the midst of a pandemic. I love your “deer in the headlights” shot (and that it is literal!). 🙂
What a lovely comment. Thank you, Robin!
That deer was so unexpected. I can’t remember the last time either of us saw one in our yard.
This was a wonderful ending to a not so good Monday. I loved the musings and photographs today, Merril. I always love the candid family shots, but your nature shots are incredible!
I love the river and birds photos! So beautiful!! I’m glad you had a chance to get together wtih family. For my family, it’s been way too long.
Thank you very much, Liz!
We haven’t seen our older child since before the pandemic. 😔.
You’re welcome, Merri! I’m really hoping that whatever powers-that-be have the authority to do so will put policies in place to get this thing under control once and for all. ‘Nuff said. 😦
Oh yes! I do, too. I wish there could be a federal policy. It’s ridiculous one state to the next with different policies, but you know people would literally be up in arms.
Biting my tongue . . .
Fine, well observed, musing over your excellent river shots. And I liked the deer in the headlights
Thank you very much, Derrick.
That deer shot was a fortunate shot through the car window. 😀
A good one
A wonderful Monday musing!
Merril, I got part way through the prose, and thought about your mom. I felt (urged on by Dickens’ words you started with).
I thought, I felt sure her passing made you richer, wiser…. in a way.
Then your mother asked for chocolate!
I’m glad some of the family got together, that you are all vaccinated and that you also wore masks!
Thank you so much for thinking of and remembering my mom, Resa! She definitely would have asked for chocolate–and that’s pretty wise, don’t you think? 😀.
Yes, it was good to get together! Thank you!
Your writing is almost as fab as you! 💙
Aww–thank you! 💙
Loved the pictures! Not only of nature but also your family 😊 there is nothing like little pleasures in life💗
Thank you so much! You’re right. 💙