The Ark

Whatever floats your boat...

I opened the audio file you sent me thinking I knew what to expect. After all, you did send me an email before that telling me you were about to send a recording of a song you did and that you wanted my honest opinion about whether you sucked or not. You mentioned all those rejects from American Idol who maybe didn’t have someone to tell them the truth and so, that’s what you wanted- my honest opinion. Sisterly sugar-coats suspended (as if they ever really existed), I was fully prepared to be straight up, as requested.

But I didn’t anticipate what came rushing in the moment I heard you singing.
All the memories...and that song…

Almost heaven
West Virginia
Blue Ridge Mountain
Shanondoah River

Growing up, we almost always shared a room. If it was bunk beds, I’d be on top. If it weren’t bunk beds, we tied them together, like boats, to keep from drifting apart in those imaginary gales, remember? We threw all we cared for onto them and held on tight while the storm raged around us.

That’s what came at me when I heard you sing. My big sister and me playing and laughing- so hard and so loud that Mom yelled at us from the other room, “Get to sleep in there, NOW!” But you know, as the story goes, we couldn’t stop. Mom finally got around to coming at us with the wooden spoon- but not before you hastily stuffed that small pillow on my backside…so that it wouldn’t hurt.

And then every once in a while, that song.

The lights would go out and for a few minutes we’d stir about under our covers, restless and wide awake. The sound of you shifting from side to side was a reminder I was never alone in that darkness. And just as I began wondering if you’d drifted off, your voice would peek out from the silence and you’d ask if I would sing you a song.

There were about a dozen that you’d start singing and we’d go through them all in a half whisper. I can’t remember them now, but this is what came in when I heard your voice singing tonight- that it was one of those songs. It was your song.

Life is older
older than the trees
younger than the mountains
blowing like a breeze

It came rushing over me, Dee. The memory of something so special- a young girl without the wisdom of experience couldn’t possibly know how golden the moment was- how precious a thing she had in the love of her sister. It’s so clear from a distance of time and space just how important your companionship was to me. It makes me wonder if that’s what’s made me so secure in my own solitude as an adult- that my sister was there in the darkness, always…I’d close my eyes and fall asleep with the knowledge of your presence. You may have been the one that gave me a sense of security that couldn’t be found beyond our bedroom door.

You asked me to be honest, and this is it- I’m telling you the truth: your voice is as pure as it was thirty some odd years ago. I can’t help but hear that child singing in the darkness. To me, it’s an angel’s voice that is only now making herself known to me.

Views: 14

Comment by JustDee on January 22, 2009 at 2:24am
What do I say to that? Thank you...
you humble me with your words... to the point of being speechless.. who would have thought.. me speechless...
I love you!
Comment by Dunleavy on January 22, 2009 at 8:34am guys just made me cry. What beautiful memories.
Comment by photo2010 on January 22, 2009 at 2:49pm
Comment by NatureJunkie on January 22, 2009 at 3:42pm
What a wonderful piece. It so perfectly captures my own history with my sister, both of us giggling and talking late into the night, pushing the limits of misbehavior that my parents would endure. When we pushed too far, it wasn't a wooden spoon from my mom (ouch), but a belt from my dad (worse ouch).

You guys are lucky. I'm glad you had what I had.
Comment by photo2010 on January 22, 2009 at 5:06pm
I got the wooden spoon once. It surprised me more than it hurt. :)
Comment by Pypermarru1 on January 22, 2009 at 6:14pm
Wooden Spoon...Oh lord, your mother and my mother went to the same "how to discipline your kids" school. Course my grandma would use a yard stick. My family has a pattern of spankings with wood. Go figure:0)
this blog is beautiful in every way. Just makes me happy for you both. We don't show the love we have for people enough. This blog is forever a sign of your good feelings syd. Good on both of ya.
Comment by JustDee on January 23, 2009 at 7:47am
I'm still trying to get Syd to sing to me....
Comment by JoAnn on January 24, 2009 at 1:07am
Awe Syd, you made me cry. That was such a sweet memory. I shared a room with my two sisters, but I'm pretty sure we mostly fought over turning the light out or leaving the light on. I don't remember any singing. You are lucky you and your sister got along so well.


You need to be a member of The Ark to add comments!

Join The Ark

© 2024   Created by Chig.   Powered by

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service