It’s been far too long since I’ve participated in #writephoto, but I’m always happy to have the opportunity. Thank you to Sue who provides this weekly prompt.
“Skulking around.” That’s what Grandma Lindley would say. “Why you skulking around, child? Don’t you have better things to do than spy on folks?” That’s what she would ask me if she were alive today and saw me.
My reply would be: “It’s not just any folks, it’s Beau.”
She would have huffed a sigh, hid a smile, and continued picking beans for supper.
The garden patch is barren. No one’s planted in it since Grandma passed. But someone’s kept it plowed. In case. And, I have a sneaking suspicion who that someone was.
He’s walking among the sheep flock, checking their coats maybe? I try to remember when shearing season was. But like many other past events that evoked pain, I’ve sealed the memory away.
As if sensing me, his head turns to the south where I stand at the base of the pecan tree. We both remain perfectly still. Even my breath stills. The moment’s broken when he adjusts the brim of his baseball cap.
A woman’s voice carries over the meadow that separates me and him. “Beau, you want some sweet tea?”
He’s staring toward me. Perhaps even sees me. Perhaps imagines I’m a ghost.
“Be right there, Car.”
And then he raises his palm, a tentative salute which I mirror before shoving my hand back into the pocket of my jeans.
As reunions go, it’s not much of one. There won’t be more. Maybe a nod. A casual asking about my health. Nothing so forward as to ask why I’ve come back, when I made it clear to him that I’d only return if I were dead. And, dead I am not. Yet, in some ways, the ones that count for him, I am.
Tomorrow I’ll buy seeds, beans and corn as a homage to Grandma. Sunflowers and 4 O’Clocks for me. I’ll sow the future in furrowed rows and pray foundation roots dig deep. For all the days I’ve runaway from this land, it still welcomes me home. Home. Yes, I’ve come home.