22 March, 2006

Glorious Reminiscence

Moira dipped her fingers slowly into the sack of grain -- she loved the way it felt against her skin. She stood in the marketplace, taking in the bustling sights and succulent smells. She grinned to hear the baker quibble familiarly with his wife over the prices they charged and of which items more would be needed today. A group of churchwomen congregated together, clicking their tongues as they gossiped about everyone else. The menfolk made their way away from the hubbub to see the new machinery on display over at Ben Rooney's place. Children ran laughing through the street, darting behind this booth and that one, and around ol' blind Tom.

He was standing there with Magnus, who dutifully waited, tail a-wagging, to lead Tom on to make the necessary purchases. His companion would not budge, however, for though he could not see, he knew he had the young ladies enthralled with his recollections of his adventures at sea. Magnus whimpered silently; the story had reached its end, and the other young women were lured away by the nearby rich fabrics in the general store. Tom started in on the same tale for a second time, and she gave Magnus a pat, encouraging them to continue with their day. It was good to hear his voice again, Moira thought.

She slowly meandered to her favourite garden stand. Its faded sign had been painted long ago by little Rebecca, the long-gone daughter of the old couple who ran it. There was Robert, a big man with a shock of white hair and crinkly, smiling eyes, and his wife Kathleen, a stately, tenderhearted woman with a love for children. Moira bought an apple, smiling to herself as she watched a very wee, trembling child change her expression from terror to delight as the big man looming overhead, taking up the sky, offered her a juicy apple. What good people they are, she mused.

As she strolled along the outskirts of town, the sea air caressed her rosy cheek. The wind carried to her the sounds of the Finnigan brothers, Andrew and Kyle, laughing heartily as they welcomed a new guest to enter their pub. Everyone became family here. She looked off the bluffs, watching the fishermen come into the shoals, dragging nets. Children bouncing out into the surf to greet them were so joyous for the day. How good to be here, and happily Moira swayed with the wind, only to be caught in the strong arms of the young, handsome doctor.

"Easy, Mrs. Sweeney," he murmured -- but who was Mrs. Sweeney? She herself was but 16 -- as he half-led, half-carried the wizened old woman with wispy, grey hair carefully back to her daybed, where she'd dream back once again...

12 March, 2006

drawing corner

just thought i'd pull out some drawings from a while back... mostly from freshman year of high school, actually. this is before i took art class, as you can probably tell by the quality.

as you may be able to tell, i was on a Lord of the Rings kick...

this first one i drew whilst sitting out during a Knowledge Bowl meet round -- this has got to be the calmest i'v
e ever been during a Knowledge Bowl meet [and i never was this calm during them again]. not my best work, clearly.

this next one is from during one of my religion classes. this doesn't mean i wasn't paying attention, of course! i just needed something to do, and decided to draw. this one has nothing to do with Lord of the Rings, but i loved the flow of her dress, so i needed to add stairs and the candle to make it work...

also drawn during some classes was the beginning of the more central picture of arwen. i added the side picture a months later, as i had nothing else upon which to draw at the time. again, not one of my best, especially when it comes to shading [notably, the lack thereof on the face...] but for before art classes, not horrible, per se...

finally, we have probably my best pre-art class effort for this collection. at least, it's the best as far as shading goes. it still doesn't quite look like him, which is irritating, but i can live with it. this was the product of a Saturday afternoon:

02 March, 2006


11 years ago, to the day. It's even the same day of the week, actually.


It was a typical wintry day, although still dark out. Throughout the city, everyone was snuggled under the covers. The wind blew the top snow around a little every now and then. The icicles glistened as they slowly melted. Spring was on its way, though far off on the horizon. The world was quiet. At a time when all the children should be asleep in their beds, we were awakened by the shrill bring-ing of the telephone.

"He stopped breathing!"

It was 1 ante meridiem.


I was always his girl. He and I used to read together, go on walks together, do puzzles together, played the same types of games. People sometimes say I remind them of him. Maybe that's just the brain, for he was a very intelligent man. A pastor who served most often as a professor, just like my father now is, he had an incredible memory. He was fascinated with history, and enjoyed languages. Knowledge was his thing. He still knew how to be sneaky, although often that was just a sign of his affection.

He was not a perfect man. He had idiotic quirks, just like everyone else. He never sang hymns at church -- I didn't know if he could -- because he was studying the text and its meaning. He once, famously, flew into a tirade at his Pinochle partner for her choice of play. He was pacing back and forth, fuming, when the scorekeeper informed him quietly, "Dad, you won." He stopped midsentence, whirled around, and said, "What?!" "You won." "Oh," and the matter was dropped. This is remembered fondly.

He was a man of many names. The second [of four thus far] of a family name, he was nicknamed for his light hair initially. In later years, scores of students referred fondly to him as Mudslide -- for the way the skin around his cheeks and mouth sagged. Some students called him, years and years down the road, asking for some sort of assistance, and he always did what he could.

He's the reason, I believe, that I've always been closer to guys than to girls. I'm just more comfortable there, and I believe that's all the time I spent with him when I was young. He was my best friend.


I remember his funeral. He, again, was the only one not singing the hymns. His funeral took place on his wife's birthday. [She still has a picture I drew of him when he was sick, those last few weeks. I coloured his skin yellow.] Had he made it to September, there would have been a 50 year wedding anniversary celebration. He died at age 77 years, of pancreatic cancer.

I remember him on this day, every year. The words echo in my ears -- "He stopped breathing!" -- and my grandfather -- my father's father, the only grandfather I have the pleasure of remembering [but that's a story for another time] -- he was gone.

I miss him.