The little girl is made of iron.
Stiff-backed and still she stands
holding up a garden hose to
water whatever she can—
black-eyed Susans in the fall,
coreopsis in the summer,
larkspur and salvia in springtime,
seed pods and freeze-dried leaves in winter.
Unmoving, resolved, in wind and rain,
in snow and hail and sunshine,
she keeps her vigil.
My father had her made for my mother.
They raised four daughters, and
while none of us ever stood this still,
not even playing hide and seek,
maybe this girl was a reminder
of wiggly giggly girls grown
and going their own way.
Now that both my father and mother are gone,
this little iron girl belongs to me,
a rather large keepsake,
a reminder of girls growing up
and now growing old.
But even more,
she reminds me that
we have weathered the world’s wildness before,
and can again,
in every season,
not without pain,
not without questions,
but also not without wonder,
not without heart.
She reminds me that
a stilled spirit,
a calm soul
is itself a keepsake
as we water
with kindness and hope
whatever we can.
Nurture peace, cultivate kindness, and carry the calm.
Nature of the week – the little iron girl in last week’s snow:
Shadow of the week – from yesterday’s drawing class:
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Text and photos © 2024 Karyn Henley. All rights reserved.