Easter brings an early sunrise, reflection, time outdoors, and dinner with my family. Sometimes we place flowers at the cemetery and sometimes I get to hug two adorable great nieces. Even more rare are drives to the Pacific Coast during the Easter weekend. However the holiday weekend unfolds, it is peaceful. Easter hasn’t always been a quiet affair for me. Having a mom who is one of ten kids, who have forty-six children combined, and who (mostly) lived in the same city meant family gatherings were quite lively when I was a child. My mom is one of seven girls, and she has three brothers (two dec.). They grew up on a farm in Arkansas before moving to Arizona in the sixties. Imagine the stories I heard as a child, about their difficult life on a farm in the American South. Stories most always told with laughter, especially from my Uncle Kenny; he was a character with a sarcastic streak. He and I shared many laughs. His attire was always the same: cowboy hat and boots, Wranglers with a noticeable western belt buckle, and a long-sleeve button-up western shirt. He found a punch line in everything. Like my grandma, his mom, he didn’t always finish his jokes, because he was laughing so hard. Also like my grandma, and a few of her children, they have (or had) a slanted smile. Slanted, but always radiant.
Easter at my grandma’s meant hunting for decorated eggs in her oleander-lined backyard. Dozens of cousins racing in every direction to find a hard-boiled prize. It meant fighting with my older brother when he smashed my Easter eggs on the ground. Real eggs! Not plastic candy-filled eggs like kids have today. Easter meant wearing an Easter dress and sometimes a matching hat. Easter meant watching my mom and her animated sisters prepare the kitchen table with enough food to feed three more families our size. All homemade, all delicious. It meant running across the street to a large city park and climbing on an actual train caboose. The caboose was painted a glossy black and we were able to climb into the hollowed-out interior and play and imagine while looking out the open-air windows. Years ago, the caboose was deemed unsafe by the city for a variety of reasons. I am glad I am in the generation that was able to play in that train. We may have licked some lead paint, but we had a great time and even better memories.
We don’t stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing.George Bernard Shaw
Thank you for visiting and reading. Wishing you and yours a wonderful weekend. Happy Easter! 🐇 Be Well. 💗 Michele
A most sincere thank you to J Re Crivello, at Masticadores, Spain, for publishing my poem, “Vintage Strength“ – He and I appreciate your visit.
Find my photos, reels, and micropoetry on IG ~ @mlsefton
Photo 1: shutterstock Nature shot: my image, Bougainvillea plant in a friend’s backyard
© 2022 Michele Lee Sefton