Monday, October 19, 2009


There isn't more than a year separating my cousin from myself.  We grew up differently and mostly apart, but there was a connection between us from the beginning.  In later years, when we would sit and count our similarities, one thing seemed crystal clear - we had garnered the lion's share of talent that was bestowed upon our clan, and we both suffered (silently) from ADD.  Fifty years ago kids like us got whacked for twisting in our seats and deviling our classmates.  We were considered disruptive and problematic and sooner or later we were either ignored or dismissed as having nothing significant to contribute.  We both excelled in our art classes.  We could paint, we could draw, we could sculpt - but forget about anything like calculus or chemistry.  We inhaled literature - our noses always stuck in some obscure volume, or the back of the cereal box in a pinch!  We watched our classmates wave their excellent SAT scores over their heads and we watched them trot off to college.  My cousin ran away to join the hippies while I skulked off (reluctantly) to junior college.

But I digress.  

When we were young, our mothers-who-were-sisters, would put us together for a few days during our summer vacations.  My cousin was tender and easily given to tears.  For some unspeakable reason, this vulnerability of hers brought out the bully in me.  This is a confession, people.  I used to take my cousin for a walk past the dirt road that led to the creek.  I  would fill her head with ghoulish stories of hatchets and murders and then I would LEAVE HER THERE and run like hell for home.  Looking back, over my despicable shoulder, I would see her standing, frozen in place, fists balled into her eyes, crying for all she was worth.

 I think that I always relented and went back for her.  But she was so trusting, so gullible, that I could turn around and pull the same nasty trick on her the following day!  I was a bad child.  She was always a sweet forgiving soul, luckily for me.  And so, we have this history between us which makes us fast and firm friends and we will be, for life.  No matter what.  I would do anything for her.   

SO...... I walked down into the cramped room the other day that was once the servants quarters in this old house.   It's a little bit creepy, that space, with its low ceilings and the smell of disappointment clinging to its walls.  For the most part, I avoid that room altogether, using it for storage of seasonal decorations, etc.  There is no light until one actually climbs down the stairs into the room and flicks a switch.  As I was reaching for the switch in the dim light, I saw something move.  It scared the beJesus out of me.  It was unworldly, unholy.

It had a friend - 

Cousin - you did it.  You scared the ever-loving sheeeit out of me!  Are we even?  HELL, NO!  We are just getting started!  My cousin made these frightful dolls from the gourds that I grow.  She and I share a love for Halloween and all things ghoulish!  I think that she is way more Tim Burton-ish in her discipline than I, but we do savor and celebrate the macabre in our own special ways.  

Bella is thinking about what she wants to be for Halloween.  

Harley is more concerned about a nap, taken in a pool of October sunlight.

And I have been thinking about that orange project - it involves another interpretation of 'Storm at Sea', which I can never seem to get enough of.  Now it's time to say goodnight.  


Bea said...

Cool gords and cool quilt. I love orange.

nicole said...

lurv your nibble use of the language, you multiply gifted bday girl you.