The temperature outside together with sunshine has reached that magic window where I feel a little lighter in my human experience and I wear a smile a little easier. I was reheating my coffee this morning and felt it. Closed up in my tiny home full of projects has been especially cozy lately.
So many projects, staring back at me and asking all manner of questions, lean against every wall. They sometimes seem so heavy as to compromise my home. Other times they illicit laughter that reminds me of my voice.
I have a neighbor with a lemon tree that I have been invited to visit, and I sometime do when straightening my legs from time at my easel. She is missed around here. She used to talk to Beetle The Dog through a window that looks out at my yard. She had a precarious set of 90+ year old legs that she used to brave the unsteady land of Los Osos. she would occasionally visit small studio events or the odd gathering here. She would share stories and her frankness and playfulness would have people in stitches. Bright blue eyes showed a clear inner light so kind and real. She often talked about her great love. Her husband and the treasured relics he left behind seemed a central point in her life. The way she spoke of him gave a glimpse at the enviable beauty of their time.
It has been some years since she relocated to a local home with fewer stairs to be in the company of others more like herself. Her playful greetings are audible to me often. I’ll visit the tree for some “Fran lemons” in a rush to mark an ingredient off my list. The other day I found a pause. I was collecting lemons for the one I love. The garden has been maintained for years but cobwebs show it as unused. Beautiful and quiet like a secret garden on autopilot. The brittle planks sit central beneath the tree and hold up a small bench at the foot of which there is a sundial. Death, with his famous cutting tool, stands under the uncaring gnomon diligently casting its shadow. And the words
”Grow old along with me
the best is yet to be”
So many years of hurried list marking while such beauty sat at my feet. This heavy thought that has been looking back at me through my work this week. It is so urgent to me to tend the love i have found in this world. Fran knew. So thank you to all of those that love me and that I love, to all those that love. It is my belief that we are all the better for it.
Yesterday in my return from the farmers market I noticed an open door at Fran’s and went to investigate. Her son is a kind and generous man. Fran passed in July. Me and Beetle will continue to miss her.