Nature's Decorations
by Barbara Ann Smith

I glanced down
the blooming magnolia driveway;
a gray sky loomed
above the old stone house
we'd shared forty years.
A flowery aroma greeted me.

I stopped to reminisce and
to reflect on the time:
the tractor got stuck and
slung clumps of mud
on my clothes and my hair.
Nature's decorations hung
on me from head to toe.
Michael whispered,
"my pretty swamp witch."
Falling to the ground,
rolling and laughing,
we wallowed in muddy grass
unto darkness; and,

when Gloria labored with her foal,
we slept in the hayloft, woke up,
looked like children with measles.
I'd love to swish those days up,
to hold them close to my chest,
never to let them drift away.
To capture his voice, his touch,
anything to ease this emptiness.

I look for footprints
left behind or a note tucked away
but, memories lingering here
are stonger than the billiance
of sun on a hot summer day.

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