It was a spring day. Bright out. The sun was high, blinding in the sky. There was snow on the ground. The dirt was sticking through the ground in patches representing rows of the fertile field of corn that was to come. I could hardly see the kites in the sky of the grainy home video. Only stings held by myself, cousins, and sisters were visible. My uncles and grandfather were laughing-I remember I was smiling in the video. I looked about 8 or so. We were all blond back then, before my hair turned brown. My grandmother was alive.
The first time I saw the video, or rather the only time, I didn’t find it amazing or beautiful. I put it away and found something different to watch.
The thing about this video is, recently when I sleep I dream of this video. I am there. I can’t speak. I can hear muffle and see the red behind closed eyes caused by the sun. The sun is bright then. I can hear laughter and I feel warm- almost an in utero feeling-not that I remember what that feels like, but similar. I see my grandmother’s yellowish-white hair, more so white, and her big glasses. I look down and see my child-feet and my child-hands in red canvas mittens.
The kites crash to the ground, the sounds stop. I see the house of my long deceased great grandparent’s in the distance- they were alive then. I don’t remember what their voices sounded like. I smile. It’s white and alive. My uncle Scott is there he smiles too.
My grandmother is now gone, she passed away four years ago. I remember her voice. She would jokingly scold me, or ask me if I wanted to play “Mintendo”. I can smell coffee and cigarettes when I think of her, and vise versa.
My great grand parents- I remember but they were late, and speaking of great grand children they hand many. I think tradition died with them. I don’t recall what they did and I would like to think my memory works. I don’t remember what their voices sounded like. For Easter we all got brow bags with treats in them- our names would be written on the side with marker. Those bags were in a backroom. The house was musty and the carpet-warn to rags- dark green and brown- I don’t think anything moved until they left this world. He passed then she. My grandmother was there- she cried, I was too young to understand.
I understand now, but I will try not to cry. I think my grandmother understood she was gone forever. Annie Beat, feeble, rigid, crippled; she understood. She cried at my grand mother’s funeral. She was her sister. I was in shock and couldn’t. I helped them.
I understand now after four years. I will make no more memories with the dead. They can only exist in my dreams, or lost videos. The last funeral I went to I cried. I knew he was never coming back. I knew they were never coming back and were gone. Same with my childhood, trees, grass, rocks, dirt, dust- its all there-really- energy cannot be created nor destroyed-its gone. As they pass so we will do the same-time exists. I guess that is where I end.