Thursday, September 27, 2007


A big orange moon hangs in the sky
And whistles a soft lullaby
She chuckles gently o'er the spell
She casts across our wishing wells

On such a night dreams dare come true
Magic is found on evening dew
The moonlit path will lead the way
For fairy tunes and elves that play
Along the edges of the wood
Beneath the fringe of autumn's hood

Come out, come out! Come sing and dance
Come join the moonlight's breathless trance
Let laughter sprinkle on the breeze
And music whisper through the trees

A summer lays aside her cloak
The golden hickory, russet oak
Will soon be glist'ning, bare of limb
And lunar light will sing a hymn
Of shifting seasons; changing scenes
Between the layers of our dreams

The big orange moon turns almost white
Bathing the field in shimm'ry light
A vision that cannot remain
When winds blow in a welcome rain

But e'er she slips behind a cloud
The moom and meadow laugh out loud

(pjt 9/27 - perhaps I should title this one "lunar lunacy" :)

Friday, September 21, 2007



For the absolute joy of it. And the beauty. And the myriad of reasons to be grateful,--children together for a time, helping each other in so many ways, enjoying just being in one another's company. That alone would have been enough to fill my heart to bursting! Nina thought well, to be married in the fall. The air is very special then. Crisp, clear skies over the Kanawha. A wind that could only whisper with happiness. Sunshine that was as gentle as the dreams of a new bride.

The weekend schedule was filled with endless details that turn now into a kaleidoscope of memories -- blessings, everyone. So many here to help smooth the busy way. Laurie, in her usual capacity, working tirelessly to entertain visitors, prepare food, do dishes, polish Nina's nails (I recall that DS Patsy polished mine on my wedding day, so her presence was felt, even in absence) etc., etc., etc. DS Isobel saved the morn (cramped by a late baking turkey) by whisking away the groom's cake and promising two more pies, eliminating one more detail and an undertow of anxiety. Kathy Jane washed the candlesticks and put her Uncle Wayne in a good humor (some services are valuable beyond measuring). Sweet Nicholas, his eyes alight over a new truck, charmed us with his smiles. Could any smile be as precious as his? The thanks due for food is beyond accounting,--Mother Ruth's and Miss Anita's apple pies, casseroles galore, courtesy of friends and family. Donna Brown kept the tally, Karen and Isobel and Kathy were on hand to pull it all together (and make the decisions beyond the last minute capacity of the mother of the bride--like how to get ice and tea into glasses when it came time to serve).

Meanwhile, on the floor, a group of newlyweds themselves (Becky and David, Laurie and Doy, Kelli and Bruce) tended to decorating tables, folding napkins, placing candles, checking music. . .until there was no more time for details, only the time for new beginnings. And such a beautiful beginning. The clarity of George Winston's piano filled the room and the procession was begun with an air of tranquility. The groom’s mother was seated by her son -- surely she will treasure the memory of his kiss as he seated her beside his grandmother. (Surely his father, so recently lost and sorely missed, would have approved.) Wes, so well chosen as best man, presided over the party with patient precision, perfect timing. We each sat listening in the interludes to the loves that blended in our hearts, joined in waiting for a bride most beautiful. Her father was the only one who felt her trembling -- she looked so serene.

Yet, there of was evidence among the bridal party of the full emotions felt by each. So precious was the sequence. Maid of Honor Lisa's tender tears; the tremor in Bill's voice as he repeated vows; Nina's words--a breath of sweet intensity; Wayne's fervent prayer (deeply felt, truly shared -to bear them safely on). No selection could have been more appropriate than the chords of "Joy" that broke as a recessional, for it was total joy to be a part of this beginning.

Other scenes fall like confetti across the memories of this special occasion: Nina with all the children gathered around; Bill clowning in the high backed chair; Nicholas eating spaghetti; Rebecca collecting flowers, Karen, Kathy and Laurie serving among the tables; the friends and neighbors there to share in the celebration; Nina (who for years has said she wanted pumpkin pie on her wedding table) picking up a piece of peach pie with her dinner; and later in the evening (when tension had subsided) Nina stooping to share a special kiss with Nicholas and Bill whisking Nina up into his arms as if to carry her away.

And so the memories roll in sweet succession.The grand events continued with friends and family close at hand through the next few days. Those of us who were together, thinking of those who had come and gone again, or who were close in mind and heart. I was thankful so many times for the simplicity of Nina's wishes which lent so well to pleasant visitation. Other days can be envisioned, like unto these with their sense of warm communion -- the ties that bind us all together.

PJT: The Family Album, 27 September 1987 – first edition, first article.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007


So the Koen's came a-helping and the little ones went a-playing in the woods. Didn't they have fun building a house in the woods, furbishing it with sticks, stones, moss and hickory nuts!!

Imagination and freedom can take a long journey. On a trek down by the creek, Abe looked up at the big pines and said, 'We could build a fort here - the trees are all in a line." Pretty astute.Every unhinged rock and sapling, along with a few loosely hinged ones, are fair game when children get into the spirit of the woods.

Grandfather was wondering which little Indian relieved the pawpaw tree of it's supporting stake (put there to keep the deer from finding the pawpaws on the lower branches). I'd be guessing, but Abe did bring a sweet boquet of pawpaw leaves to his mother that day.When Grandfather went out this morning to investigate the pawpaw patch, he discovered an early harvest. There they were, all but one of the pawpaw 'eggs' from that tree neatly nested in a soft bed of moss. [He brought them in and put them in the frig, but thinks the picking may be a week or two too previous to allow them to ripen off the tree.]

Me? Well I'm not as fond of pawpaws as is Grandfather, so no doubt I find this considerably more amusing...but I did manage to control my giggles when he brought in 8-9 pawpaws and first relayed the story of their premature harvest.

Babes in the woods -- You gotta love it!