Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Swifter than a Weaver's Shuttle

By Belinda

End of the day; a long one, and my lap top came home with me, but as I plan my last few hours of evening, he is there, standing silent, and waiting.

He moves with the stealth of a cat, this dog. He has learned to open the door from his apartment downstairs and pops in unannounced at odd moments. Like now.

I think of my supper; a little too large, a lot too fried. A walk would do us both a great deal of good. I cannot resist.

And so we go, out into the fresh air of evening, into the village filled with birds that are chirping and cheeping, trilling and peeping their evensong.

We hear voices from the park before we can see it, then come upon a row of parked cars, and bleachers full of parents cheering on two girls soccer teams in black and yellow jerseys. We pass by sedately and leave the running to them tonight.

Something about an evening game played in a park, is irresistably evocative to me. It feels timeless somehow, as though it could be a moment from the past, or future.

I had the same feeling when Brenda had her grade 2 school photograph taken at King George School in Newmarket. She had been off school not feeling well that day but didn't want to miss the photograph. She got dressed up in a pretty little dress, all floral frills and black velvet, her blonde hair, page boy cut, shiny and slightly fly away. I took her to the old school with the wide wooden staircases with curving polished wood bannisters, going up to the second floor and down to the basement. On the wall was a plaque with the date 1912. As I walked downstairs with her and she joined the other children, I felt an overwhelming wave of emotion at this one school photograph in a stream of other school photographs, of other children, over the years, right in this place.

You can tell from Brenda's eyes in the photo that she wasn't well. She is smiling, but her eyes have that slightly sunken look. She looks pitifully brave. It seems like only yesterday, and yet now she is the mother of two beautiful girls of her own who are on the cusp of their teen years.

We have walked all around the village now and are rounding the corner to pass the park again. It is eerily deserted. There is not a car or person in sight. The game ended and everyone left for home while we were short streets away. The silence is palpable, and poignant, where the air had so recently been filled with the noise of a game.

Job 7:6
6 "My days are swifter than a weaver's shuttle,...

When have you felt a similar sense of life's brevity and swift cycle?


Dave Hingsburger said...

Wonderfully written, just wonderfully written. Those moments of timelessness that connect from generation to generation are such powerful things. It teminds us that we stand in a river of time.

Marilyn Yocum said...

I have the same feeling at old school pics hung in halls, especially from way back. The same deep overwhelming wave of emotion, even in places I have no connection with. The knowledge of that moment where all were gathered, just briefly.

Your last paragraph brought tears. Good ones, though.

May all the words and actions of this day stand in the light of eternity.