our house

I stir cream into my coffee using the small silver spoon with her name on it, because it does the job and because I cannot find the courage to pack it away.  It’s at least 100 years old, having been her great great grandmother Celia’s first.  We used it to feed her oatmeal and applesauce for almost five years.

Tucker comes downstairs counting to see who's awake.  I set the hot mug on the side table as he crawls onto my lap.  There's only four of us who live in this house, but there used to be six.  We're missing five and six now.  

There's an exposed beam that runs the length of our kitchen ceiling, rumored to be from a barn built in the 1800s in Delaware county.  Tollie points up at it and says "houf."

We walk to the grocery, the boys sharing popcorn and grapes while I push.  Near the front of the store are bundles of firewood.  Know what that's for, Tollie? Tuck leans back in the stroller to ask.   
Houf, he replies, tilting the word up at the end, wondering.  
Yes, Tollie, you're right! Those are for kids like us to build our own houses.  Mom, can we get some?!

I wrote last week who she is.  And I realize maybe it should have been who she was.  I mean, some might say there’s a period on the sentence that was her life.  But I didn’t edit my words then, and those are the ones that fell from my fingertips.  She is.  She still is.

Tucker is slowly building her in the imagination of his brother, her brother.  She will reside for eternity in them, their eyes, their smiles, their hearts.  The man who forged the spoon and the one who hewn the beam are not really gone.  Life obeys the laws of conservation, nothing is ever completely lost.  She will exist forever as a story scribbled somewhere on the soul of the world.  She will.


Poppy John said...

Jenni Baby,

You made me cry.


P.S. I now better understand why I put my name on
e-v-e-r-y-t-h-i-n-g I own.

P.P.S. I think you should name your next dog "Houf".

rht said...

She is. She will.

Christy said...

Yes, she will.