Tonight after the sun had laid itself to rest, I slipped outside to have a look of the Blue Moon that has been touted in my news feed today. They say it will be a couple years before the next one comes around. I thought I’d like to not miss the opportunity. I quietly stepped outside so as not to wake my husband sleeping sitting up in his old brown recliner, and hoping my son wouldn’t notice my absence. I wanted this time alone and I wondered how many others took a step outside in the dark, away from the TV, the computer or whatever else distracts them from living in the moment, to take a gander at this beautiful light in the darkness.
The air is heavy tonight. It hangs and pushes against my lungs. It is warm but not oppressive and I sit quietly listening to the quiet. It surprises me that all I hear are the crickets. I hear no cars driving on the main road close enough to my house I can hear screeching brakes from time to time. I heard no sirens while I sat, which have become so common place.
As I sat my memory was awakened just a tiny little bit. Sitting there alone in the dark, hearing nothing but the crickets, it reminded me of sitting in my great grandmother’s yard in Southern Indiana. The familiar heavy air, it always smelled like fresh clean dirt and green ferns and there was always the singing of the crickets in the night. The chairs in the yard were those old metal ones that were always cool in the evening when you sat in them, and my fat little thighs always seemed to stick to them no matter what the temperature happened to be. Those old lawn chairs weren’t very comfortable and they weren’t very pretty, but I would give anything to have one more chance to go back to one of those summers, so many moons ago and sit in one of those old chairs. To have my grandparents and my mother sitting there beside me. To go running in the darkness in this little tiny town of Selvin, Indiana, without any street lights to keep the shadows from being scary. To sit back down gasping for my breath, and listen to my grandpa talking to his mother, my great grandma.
I was never quite ready to go inside to bed, but once inside I would smile inside my heart when greeted with the comfort of the big old double bed in a room off the living room, just big enough to hold that bed, a dresser and an old piano and that no one ever played, with flowered old wallpaper and some old relative’s picture hanging on the wall. I would slide under those old white sun dried sheets, feeling their dampness from all of that Indiana humidity. I would listen to the crickets as they lulled me into sleep, knowing when I woke in the morning my great grandma would be busy doing something, in the garden. I would hear the slap of the old screen door as she came inside and put her giant teapot on the stove. I would go and sit beside her and she would slap my chubby child’s thigh and tell me I had “good solid legs”, making me feel not so tubby after all. I would get the glass bottle from the fridge that held her drinking water and I wish I had that old glass bottle. It was a part of who she was to me. Something I could count on always being there, hidden to the left top wire rack of her little refrigerator. We didn’t keep water in the fridge at home.
I don’t recall a night such as tonight with the air just right and no sounds of the town I live in. I found myself not distracted from my life inside my home and felt if I closed my eyes I could once again hear the voices clearly of those I have loved so deeply that I now can only hear in my dreams.
Once in a blue moon, it does not come often enough.
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