Sweet honeysuckle hanging on the back fence drifted in through the open window and mingled with the music echoing up the staircase. The Beatles…Elvis…Chicago…Fleetwood Mac…Sly and the Family Stone and Casey’s long distance dedication danced around in the small apartment we called home.
Slanted golden light and a soft clean breeze blew dry the clothes hanging on the line just outside. A vacuum whirred to life and fought for space against the scouring of sinks and baseboards. Comet cleanser would soon overpower the airy spring Saturday morning, but that was OK. There’s a certain satisfaction and joy in both.
I left the window and climbed the tall, creaky antique bed with beautifully turned and darkly stained four posts my grandmother had gifted my mother as she, we started a different life less one…now a family trio.
I pulled the open ironing board over the bed’s edge to cover my thighs and slapped down my sketch pad, sharp pencil, and inspiration.
I went to work. Outlines lightly carved into the page darkened and feathered into deep gray shadows giving the forms shape and dimension as I scraped the side of the pencil against the paper.
A few hours later, movement broke my trance. My mother walked in to check on me and smiled at my handiwork and the room littered with wadded up starts, restarts and half-creations.
On a rare occasion, I would get something worth keeping. Either way, it didn’t matter. I created and I was satisfied.
For a short space, I dreamt a boy’s dreams and melted away in a world of my own. Dreams of promise and possibility, escape and limitless freedom lived under a Carolina blue sky.