Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Retirement Community - June 2007

No one else is awake as she breathes the morning's first smell of damp basement.  She slides into her favorite blueberry top and shorts.  Up the stairs silently through Nana's aqua living room to the kitchen.  She smiles at the extra IGA white bread on the counter.  Gets a chair to retrieve six Brachs coffee candies out of the biscuit tin on top of the fridge and into the pocket.  Swoosh as the bread slides off the counter and swings in her hand.

Back down the stairs and into the flip flops effortlessly as only the limber-toed can.  It is still wanting to be night.  She grabs her fishing pole and makes her way down the rocky yard to the dock.  The ascent onto the dock is creakless.  Two turtles are asleep on a log ten yards away and she wants them to know she is no threat.  They don't need to plunge into the safety of the water yet.

She knows that she is paying time.  There must be time spent in order to catch enough fish for the fry.  They bite on white bread doughballs and they live right UNDER the dock, but they don't jump into her hand, even though they do bite dangling toes.

The lake is the best color of the mood rings in the souvenir shop.   The sun is not yet punishing, with its double whammy off the lake and inevitable end with Solarcaine.  Pale children should fish in the wee hours of the morning, before the adults stake their claim on the day.  She will go to church on Sunday for show and tell, but she knows this is also Close to God.

The silence perfectly counter-balances the plunk as the first baited hook drops into the water.  Almost immediately there is a tug, followed by smaller tugs and she pulls in the line.  The sunfish is beautiful, but it's not as big as her she removes the hook and puts it back in the water.  She decides to make the next dough ball bigger.  She wants it to descend further in the lake before a fish bites.  There is a little lead sinker, but these fish bite fast.

The next one is a keeper.  She breathes relief that there are still some big enough fish left. 

The next hour and a half are hers to harvest the fish dinner.  Later there will be places to go.  

As she sees the lights come on in the house and she detects the coffee smell wafting out the screened-in porch, she takes her fish to the cleaning board and carefully readies them to be frozen.   She takes the bucket of fish parts to the edge of the lake and releases them back where they came from.  The turtle starts and splashes into Lake Thunderbird.


  1. i loved the spiritual aspect of this piece; the imagery had an engrossing, lucid clarity.
    thanks for sharing.

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  3. What a nice piece. I love it. Thanks for sharing your art with us. Seems to me that your pretty mentally active even after retirement. I wish to live at ny retirement community that will mentally stimulate me.