Archive for friendship

The Meadow

Posted in short story with tags , , on 2010/08/23 by R L Burns

 

Settling back into her seat, she looked up at the sky and smiled. The clouds were so much prettier here than at home; they looked like Maxfield Parrish prints: huge, fluffy, iridescent. And they felt so close that she thought she could touch them. It was amazing.

As the Jeep bounced down the unpaved road she glanced over at the driver. His eyes were intent on the path in front of them, though occasionally he would look off to the left or right, seeking to find perfect places to show her; exquisite natural landscapes guaranteed to charm and enrapture. So far he had not disappointed her, and somehow, it was all having a profound effect on her. After nearly a year of emotional chaos – complemented by a lifetime of the same – she could actually feel herself unwind, relax, settle…a fox up ahead on the road, jumped, startled, at the sound of the Jeep, and she watched it rush off into the woods and away from danger. He had seen the fox, too, she had felt the pull of the brakes as he slowed down. He glanced at her and smiled self-consciously then looked back at the road. She looked at him, smiling, and then turned again to study the sky.

Huge puffy rabbits, lions and castles slid across the sky as they drove. Suddenly he stopped the car. He looked at her and smiled. She grabbed her camera, nodded, and climbed out onto the road. There were no cars coming from either direction, which, she had come to realize was not that unusual. He held out his hand to her and she took it.

“Want to take a look?” he asked – knowing already her answer.

“Yes!” she laughed.

“Do you have your camera?”

She held it up for his inspection, her eyes twinkling. “You know it!”

“Good,” he nodded, and pulled her along.

She followed him across the dirt and gravel road, hurrying to match his long-legged stride. Stepping off the road, they walked through thigh-high grass and flowers. She was so intent on watching where she was going that she didn’t notice the beauty around her until he stopped. He put his hand on her shoulder to steady her and asked, “What do you think?”

She stood there in awe. They were surrounded by a field of wild grass and flowers; yellow, purple, white, it was amazing. In the distance she could see mountains, trees she could not identify…it was so incredibly lovely that she wanted to cry. All she could do was stare and then begin to take pictures in hopes of embedding the scene permanently in her brain.

After a few moments she glanced over to see him smiling proudly. She reached out and took his hand, looking up at him with a smile. “Thank you. Thank you. I don’t know how to thank you enough for…for this. For everything…” Her voice trailed off as she looked at the beauty around them and then back at him.

He took her hand, squeezed it, and nodded. Then they made their way back to the Jeep.

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Yellow Butterflies

Posted in Poetry, Ramblings with tags , , , on 2010/08/22 by R L Burns

my new best friend

and i

went for a walk –

we looked at the sky

and listened

for rocks that talk –

 

although I think

I was more interested in those

than she.

 

plants and bugs

were much more

to her liking

although she tolerated

my eccentricities

when we went hiking

 

perhaps it was the

flowers on my dress –

perhaps not…

 

but we found ourselves

surrounded by

a bevy of butterflies,

each one of them yellow

they lit on my dress,

scrambled onto her side.

 

she looked at me questioningly

and I just shrugged,

as perplexed as she

 

reluctant to lose

our colorful, gentle escort

we stopped to lie

down in the grass

and look up

at the clouds in the sky

 

until the butterflies moved on.

Me and My New Best Friend

Car Wrecks, Family and Friends

Posted in life story, Ramblings with tags , , , , , on 2010/01/07 by R L Burns

Yesterday afternoon someone basically ran my mom off the road and she hit a tree.   Her car is totaled but she is not.  I am so grateful.  My stepfather and I took her for spine, etc., x-rays.  She was given some meds and sent home with us.  I spent the night with her last night and most of the day today.  I am so very thankful that she was not more seriously hurt.  We will have the x-ray results on Monday.  A young woman at the doctor’s office was worried about mom because she was in an accident in December and she felt okay so she did not go for any x-rays.  Three days later they x-rayed her and found she had broken her neck…So, we are nervous about the results but are hopeful — and incredibly glad and blessed that she seems to be relatively unscathed.

While at mom’s last night I had a phone message from my oldest friend, Melanie.  She didn’t know about mom’s wreck but said she had some bad news she thought I might want to know that she didn’t want to email or leave in a phone message, so would I please call her in the morning.  I wondered what it could be – she had made it clear it wasn’t about her or her husband or daughter, so…

I called her this morning.  She told me that Tuesday (the day before my mom’s wreck), someone with whom I was once very, very close was killed instantly in a car accident in a busy intersection here in Virginia Beach.  I was stunned – and saddened – and probably even more so given what had just happened with mom. 

Ken S., once, was my very, very good friend.  In high school he was unfailingly kind to me – and for most of junior high school, too, if I am honest. 

At one point in my senior year of high school we dated for a “few minutes”, but he…well, we had a falling out when he asked me – totally out of the blue one day – what I would do if Michael showed up again.  (He knew us back in junior high, you see; lived in Michael’s old neighborhood.)

My resonse was, “Please don’t ask me that question.” 

He insisted.

I answered truthfully.

He never forgave me and went on to do a few really, truly, awful things to pay me back for that admission.  I was sorry and saddened by it, really, because I liked him immensely and he was bossy and funny as junk and we got on really well as great friends.  So…it has been nearly twenty years since I have spoken to him; I saw him once at Melanie’s church about five years ago but walked away without saying a word to him.  I am sorry now I didn’t try and be…forgiving.  I had forgiven him I just didn’t want to talk to him or open that door again due to the things he had done to someone else close to me in his war of revenge on me — which is all irrelevant now, I’m just, I suppose, trying to justify why I did not speak to him.

I have learned over the years that he grew up to be a good man, charitable, kind, generous, still funny as junk — the same Ken I had known as a young girl.  I am glad of that, sorry of his hatred towards me back then.  And very, very, very sorry that he died in such an awful way and at such a young age. 

And somehow, I feel a little guilty at my first thought when Melanie told me:  I am sooo glad my mom is alive!  That didn’t mean that I was glad Ken was dead instead of her, but it did make the continued gift of her life so much clearer than it had been even the moment before.

Thank you – especially Dev, Greg, and Angel – for the wishes and support…Mom continues to mend.

And Ken…rest in peace, my old friend.