scattered pieces

“As long as they talk about you, you’re not really dead,
as long as they speak your name, you continue.
A legend doesn’t die, just because the man dies.”

Rod Serling


(Dad’s basement stairs / Julie Cook / 2017)

Que the scary music….

Now hear the Psycho shower scene music playing in your head as you open the old wooden door…
standing atop the small landing, staring down the overtly steep and timely worn stairs…

Make certain you hold tightly to the wobbly grey handrails, lest you stumble…
tumbling down into the ancient bricks of the fireplace…
this before making the left turn down the final short flight of steps leading into
the bowels of the raw and dimly lit 65 year old cavern…
otherwise known as the basement of the house.

And so this is where I begin…

Generations that went before me…
antiques, junk, trash, chairs, tables, chests, albums, empty boxes, tools,
circa 1945 office furniture, cameras, train sets, clothes, books, glasses, lamps,
photographs….pieces to the lives of those long past and one recently past.

Lives, homes, treasures and trash…stored, saved, discarded, forgotten…
yet waiting….

The “Your Junk Guys” came today and carried away an ancient refrigerator, mattresses,
boxsprings, computer monitors, two ancient recliners–one being my grandmother’s…
she died in 1986…
plus the ripped out carpet, carpet pads, old light fixtures, bookshelves, paint buckets…
as much as they could squeeze into the two large trucks.

They will be back.

All as I once again find myself running to the bank,
straightening newly discovered messes,
waiting on the flooring guys,
still waiting on lawyers and the court….
balancing how to pay electricians, painters, roofers…
while navigating the roadways…

Picking up the pieces…
of one who preferred just to leave things scattered on the ground…
and in boxes, and in bags, and on shelves, and under sheets…
pieces to all that once was…
his,
hers,
ours,
theirs…

Conveniently out of sight,
but oddly never out of mind….

God, pick up the pieces.
Put me back together again.
You are my praise!

Jeremiah 17:14

15 comments on “scattered pieces

  1. atimetoshare.me says:

    I can so relate. The Junk Guys made two trips to our house. God will pick up the pieces and soon you will be back together again.

  2. Melissa Presser, Lover of Jesus says:

    Needed today. Love to you

  3. Lynda says:

    Such a difficult task! So much to sift through and so many memories that resurface. May the memories be gentle and blessed as you work your way through the family history contained in the “stuff”. I’ve been helping a friend with something similar although her parents are still living – but one in a retirement home and one in a long-term care facility. So challenging and so exhausting! Blessings and prayers.

  4. Citizen Tom says:

    When we are getting old, the last thing we want to go down is a set of stairs like that.

    • you got that right Tom—I often think of some sadistic humor with Dad, knowing I’d be up and down those blasted things!!

      • Citizen Tom says:

        I have a basement I spend a lot of time in. Much of it is finished, but the previous owner did the work, and he had trouble with figuring out how to install a hand rail. Apparently, the posts that would support it are not spaced appropriately. Twenty years ago that did not seem like much to worry about. I suppose I had better do something about it now.

      • it’s funny because growing up I never gave a second thought about traversing up and down these stairs—skipping one or two in my rush or excitement…today, I hold onto the rails with both hands making certain I plant each foot solidly on each tread!!
        If I fall and break my neck, maybe Dad will feel some sense of sadistic satisfaction…..

      • Citizen Tom says:

        I doubt your father would get any satisfaction out of it. My guess is that he had learn to dread those stairs too.

        There is an old saying. “There is no fool like an old fool.” When we are young our problems are mostly of our own making. When we are old, we don’t have to go looking for trouble, and if we did not learn anything when we were young……

      • It’s funny Tom– not long before he got sick, we told them we were locking the door to the basement– no reason for them to go down there– but he protested– proclaiming he’d use both hands on both rails being very careful– this coming from a man who couldn’t take the short walk down the driveway to retrieve the paper without falling–its true what they say “its hell getting old”

      • Citizen Tom says:

        True enough. Still, living to a ripe, old age is considered a blessing. Why? I guess that something we each have to figure out for ourselves. Sometimes I think I know the answer. Sometimes I don’t.

  5. I love the way you describe your experiences and the impact they have on your and others. 🙂 ❤

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