Thursday, March 11, 2010


We eat oats for breakfast. On bright mornings when the table shines with sun I see a hundred hand-prints scattered around bowls and crumbles. Janie still chews on after I clear dishes and spoons, sippers of milk and coffee cups.

Between bites she drawls on, "Momma, how about we call Fridays, Gray Friday, I mean Black Friday," she swallows, "because that was when the sky turned black."

"The sky turned black?"

"Yeah, like when Jesus died." It's her favorite story. She flutters on. Ravens feed Elijah, and Joseph's brothers sell him into slavery, Esther, David, adventures of playing spiders with Jack, games of Billy Goats Gruff. Her words, a river of days, rush past me.

The bowl half empty, the table cleared and wiped, Janie leans on one elbow. "Hey Momma, in heaven will there be something greater than talking do you think?"

Talking. She blinks. For a moment we both wait. "Probably."

She grins, "What could it be?! Oh, I wonder what it could be." And a small pool of quiet is washed away with the wonder.

What could be better than talking?


Lori said...

Oh my goodness - she is so awesome! A playdate is definitely in order so the girls can talk each other's ears off about such things.

(And I'm totally with you on the oats! If anyone complains about eating oatmeal w/ blueberries nearly every day I tack 3 more days on for good measure.)

Julagay Blog said...

Beautiful... once again

Goat said...

Truely Emma has the Gift of Gab. That gift has always been a mystery to me. I seem to have a small daily allotment of words, have to parse them out or find myself retreating . Perhaps that is why I love poetry. The economy of words.

I love that she sees her gift as THE best it gets.

Mo & Barbi said...

Beautifully written, Bethany!! I TOTALLY hear Emma talking as I'm reading this... you should write books!

Olson Family said...

Amen, Sister! And I love how you described her monologues, "a river of days." Ah yes. And I love the way you let the current carry you along, net let down to capture the poetry, meaning, and profundity of it all!