1968-(Memory)Spindly legs, like that of a baby dandelion colored giraffe. The top was glossy and reflected back images of laughter, smiles and even tears. My first memory at my mother’s table was my 6th birthday party. Dressed in a navy with tiny white polka dot dress my best friends and I stood. Poised to perfection all saying, “CHEESE.”
Atop the table a blue iced double decker cake, made by my mother’s hands. The kitchen was the best place to be in. Sunny, clean and full of wonderful smells from my mother’s home baked goodies.
The table seated six
my brothers and me.
My next memory is of my mother’s hands at the table. They were always busy creating something special for a church or school function. As, “the sun-tanned” PTA president and Sunday school teacher my mother always had a project, be it angels, wreaths or cookies and cakes for the holidays. My mother would sit with my Aunt and Uncle-her siblings- and “coffee clutch” while they smoked.
Year after year, my birthday was held at that table. As I watched my image change from baby to little girl. I noticed when my friends were here my reflection sparkled. Our heads were like helium balloons bouncing around in my mother’s light.
Little girl lost.
I remember sitting at this table for only one other occasion, when my big brother stopped in for a visit. Eleven years my senior he was tall, dark, hairy and handsome. He would always let me sit upon his lap. He protected me when he was home, which was rare, but with him at my side, my reflection shone brightly again.
I barely knew
My great protector
1973 we moved. With us went the table. I remember sitting under it during my parents parties. I would listen to the laughter, and wonder what it was like to be grown up. Gorgeous dresses and fancy shoes, the men in suits, always giggling and smiling. My hand would reach up from below and grab the appetizers then I would sit in my silence and eat cream cheese roll ups and bacon wraps til I burst or was caught!!!
It is that
My last memory of this table, is really of one of the chairs. Loud voices from the perch above which led to the loft overlooking the family area stands Tony. “Don’t tell me what to do, I fucking hate you. I can’t wait to get out.” He screams at my father down below. As my father looks upward, down sails the chair. No one was harmed and nothing was broken accept another piece of my father’s heart.
I know he loved us
I know he loved mom
But his silence
By the demons
Who were my brothers two
Fell to the ground