Friday, September 21, 2007
There is something so peaceful about the image of a two lane dirt road, a scattering of pine trees out in the middle of a grass choked field, an old wood frame house, porch sagging with the weight of years. You can imagine a sweet faced collie lying by the steps listening for his master to come out the front door. You hear the squeaking hinges as the screen door is pushed open, an old man with worn but clean overalls comes out, lights his pipe, admiring the day as the screen slams shut behind him. The smell of biscuits baking in the oven of an old iron stove waft out like a beckoning finger through the open window , the grits bubbling on the hottop surface , some sidemeat frying in the pan. The old woman watches her old man through the window, admiring him as he admires the day. She plans in her mind what they will talk about as they sit at their little table and eat the most glorious meal of the day. She smiles as he turns to look in at her, his eyes still twinkling after all these years. He calls her honey because there is nothing sweeter in the world and (she) is the best medicine for what ails him. She calls him Darling because that is the secret name she has called him in her heart since the first day they met. Yet neither of them have spoken a word. They have been so long together that they finish each others sentences. They have been so long together that they don't have to speak at all. She knows that after he finishes his breakfast he will clear the plates from the table and take any scraps (which she insures there are) out to his old dog who he loves almost as much as he loves her. And she isn't jealous of that love because a man who can love his dog is a good man. If he loves his dog, he'll love his family. Or at least that is what she thinks. She is sometimes wrong, but she doesn't feel she is wrong on this one. After he has eaten the ambrosia she has prepared for him,he'll pick up his old cane pole and call to the dog and they'll be off to the creek for a bit of morning fishing. The bees buzz lazily at the flowers on the lantana which blooms by the porch. Soon they will move on to taste the nectar of the roses and then sip at the tomato vines. There is something peaceful about an old two lane dirt road in the heat of a South Carolina day. War is far away, and while thoughts may turn to it, for this morning at least, it won't interfere.