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365 Days of Writing Prompts: Day 12

January 12, 2016

Take two

Run outside. Take a picture of the first thing you see. Run
inside. Take a picture of the second thing you see. Write
about the connection between these two random objects,
people, or scenes.

This is one of those times I wish I had looked ahead at the prompt. Alas, my camera’s batteries are dead and I have none to replace them. I am also one of those rare creatures on planet Earth today who does not own a cellphone. So I have no pictures to share. I decided to do the exercise anyway, with written visuals. Not sure how well this will go, but I am going to try.

As I step outside on to my front door, the first thing I see is the neighbor’s house across the street. When I was a child, this was the home of Mrs. Hardy. We spent many a summers sitting on her long front porch, perched in a mish-mash of chairs, listening to her stories. Her front porch was the gathering spot for other elderly neighbors and there was always a lot of gossip going on. If you wanted to know the ins and outs of our small town, you just needed to sit there for about an hour and listen. Today, there is a young family who lives there. The front porch is still filled with chairs, but plants also adorn the cement porch. The gossip corner has been replaced with a gossip-creator as this family argues loudly sometimes. On rare occasions, this young family sits outside, but most of the time, the door is closed, even in the heat of the summer. The children sometimes come outside and play and they do have a dog that is taken out sometimes. This morning, as I glance across the way, there is a silence there as it is winter. The chairs sit like frozen sentinels. The plants are gone. And yes, the door is tightly closed.

As I come back inside, the first thing I see is the large tv unit. On top of it sits the urn which holds my mother’s ashes and a photo of my mother as a teenager. Angels surround the entire scene as my mother loved angels. This is the altar to love which my father put together. His love for my mother was rarely shown and I often think my mother didn’t believe he loved her at all. But she was a difficult woman to show love to as she didn’t believe she deserved love. And if she didn’t deserve it, then no one else did either. Father tried. God knows he tried, but she pushed him away so often. She told my father that he would have another woman within six months of her death. It has been nearly nine years now since her passing and my father is still a single widower. He only ever loved my mother.

So what is the connection here? The past and memories. Here in my childhood home, I am surrounded by the past and all of the memories that filled this space – my mother, the neighbors, my childhood. I am reminded that some things never change and even when some things do change, like the young family in Mrs. Hardy’s house, there is still pain here. More pain than love. And I believe it is my mission to pour love back into this house. I tell my dad and brother all the time how much I love them. And as for the squabbling neighbors across the street, whenever they argue, I focus my intention on them and shower them with love too.

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