Tuesday, June 12, 2018

Missing

I miss the long drive across the heart of Canada, getting up in the middle of the night in search of an 18 wheeler to lead me through the darkness.
I miss sunrise on the prairie, the way you can see 20 miles in any direction from bright yellow fields to the bruised sky of an approaching storm.
I miss holding hands and talking for hours as much as the gentle quiet hours shared.
I miss looking out the rear mirror and seeing a bike I know I will get to explore with.
I miss stopping at Timmy's for a cup in Regina or Medicine Hat or Winnipeg or Dryden. All honestly, those 'ors' should all be 'ands'.
I miss Calgary. It's big city feel and the old west all wrapped in one.
I miss knowing the Rockies are right there waiting on the horizon.
I miss the drive through the foothills, watching the mountains steadily grow in the windshield.
I miss Moraine Lake and the Valley of Ten Peaks where I could just sit and watch years pass by.
I miss the shrieks of 'papa!' from two little boys that make every mile of the long drive worthwhile.
I miss walks and bike rides to the park, red, green or purple. I miss pushing two giggling boys on the swings and listening to their laughter.
I miss the pitter patter of the giants who live in the house above us.
I miss nights around the fire with family close by.



Saturday, June 9, 2018

First Time at the Plate

He stood at the plate for the first time that mattered, the first time it wasn’t just him and dad in the backyard where failure was a secret between them. His little fingers squeezed the bat with the strength of his nervous energy. All around him was a fuzzy haze filled with players of the opposing team, coaches and parents. All just a blur. His focus was narrow and aimed at the hand that held the ball he wanted desperately to hit.

The first pitch dropped out of the sky and landed on the plate, unhittable. But he swung anyway. His eyes had closed as the ball got close.

He checked his feet and got set again. Another lobbed pitch. He lunged forward to try and reach as he took another big swing, missing by a foot. He just wanted to see one like dad threw, over the plate not on it. But he didn’t have the experience to know he didn’t have to swing every time. 

“Watch the ball all the way, wait for one you like” he heard his dad say over the din of the crowded diamond. He fought off the urge to swing at the next one as it bounced at his feet again. Adults met on the mound and talked a bit, then laughed. He was sure they were talking about him and his fingers gripped the bat just a little tighter. He was fighting back tears now.

And then he saw what he wanted, a ball that flew flatter than the others. He pulled his hands back and swung the bat hard. As the ball met aluminum he felt and heard the ‘plink’ as the ball flew back the way it had come.

“Run, run, run,” the crowd started yelling. He froze for a second not remembering what came after hitting the ball, he never ran in the backyard, just hit ball after ball. Then it came to him in a flash as everyone around him got louder. He bent over and gently placed the bat on the ground and started running to the base as fast as his six year old legs would carry him. His tiny strides carried him safely to the bag for the first time. He stopped on the base and looked for dad with a big smile. The tears had lost this time. 

video inspiration

Wish I could be there to cheer you on Cullen.

Note: I've been waiting for some big mythical inspiration to hit me and launch into a major writing project for far too long. A good friend told me just to write so when I taste even the smallest morsel of inspiration I'm going to put down some words. And here it begins.