~JUST A SCRATCH~For Henry the excitement was in the chase, the rise of blood and endorphins sending happy messages to his little three-year-old mind. His brother, David was a good sport about it but he was more of an intellectual fellow and found joy in the peacefulness of pondering insect species. These boys filled their days with much outdoor time and their yard was of the magic and making of fairy tales. The space held facets of each of the most amazing qualities of outdoor goodness. The brothers had the luxury of all the usual and wonderful playground equipment, swings, a slide, teeter-totter, a set of monkey bars and a sand box with every kind of Tonka truck imaginable, bulldozer, dump truck and steam roller etc. But often times they’d weary quickly of these man-made playthings; feeling and hearing an audible call from nature. There was the rich, verdant field full of thick, tall grasses, to “get lost in,” David spent much time in “bug-land,” here. The meadow held an added gem-like quality of many different kinds of wildflowers and the excitement of acrobatic, catapulting, bright, green grasshoppers. The marsh bordering the edge of the field held the songs and stories of frogs. Most every little boy longs for the cold, peeper-belly in palm and the gross but funny, warm feeling when the frog pees on them. Of course they often visited with flimsy butterfly nets and crept quietly along the edge to capture their culprits. There were many pairs of mucky-wet shoes to their mother’s displeasure. There was a size-able stand of trees beyond the dampness that Henry often asked to trek to. He liked the dangerous dark feeling of the woods and the sharp set of craggy rocks that formed a cave on the shady back-side of the tall boulders. David wasn’t into it but he’d often humor his brother and go along because his mother asked him to. Her motto sang to the tune of the familiar and wise words, “safety in numbers, boys, remember. Stick with each other, okay? Keep yourselves safe.”“We will,” David, the elder of the two at seven-years-old, confirmed as he walked toward the door with his nose buried in a “Field Guide, Handbook for Bug-Lovers.”“Ahhhuh, yup ,” replied Henry as he rushed through the screen door, which then banged loudly shut behind him.©2012 H.G.
“Lunch will be in a little while so don’t fill up on wild blueberries either!” She advised knowing that they would and not really minding if they did either. It was one of those things that her mom used to say and sometimes these remarks would slip from her lips without her even conjuring them up. Sort of like the “safety in numbers,” statement. They worked when she was a kid, so it couldn’t hurt to perpetuate some of her mom’s mom-ness on to her boys.After the boys had spent their typical twenty minutes or so on the regular playground fun that they enjoyed, Henry began to get the “look,” in his eyes…he wanted to explore.“Davie, woods-time? Let’s play bad-guys, huh?” Questioned Henry, wide-eyed and ready.“I’m onto this new bug though, look at it,” he pointed to a page of the hand book that he’d resumed pawing through hungrily, “let’s find THIS one, Hen!” David tried to sound enticing.“NO,” responded, Henry, very crossly, “I want woods-time,” he was set in his decision.“Fine you do that but stay on the edge of the trees and I’ll be in the deep part of the field where I can see you,” compromised his brother wisely.Henry’s eyes turned from gloom to the sudden bright sparkle so readily when decisions worked out in his favor. So they set off together at first, through the thick of it, pausing to pluck dandelions grown tall. Their legs became spotted and damp with the foam of spit-bugs gathered on tall stalks of grass. Henry had already begun the broken dialogue of his “bad-guys,” routine and commenced to his role-playing further with a long, straight stick he’d found, purposing it as a gleaming, sharp, pirate sword. His play began drawing him deeper into the shaded forest and his older brother, enthralled in the “search,” for the next amazing creature didn’t take notice.Suddenly, Henry stopped, startled and turned around to find the way he’d come in but nothing looked as it should. His heart began pounding but not in the happy way he was used too. He called out to his brother weakly, frozen with fear. His fun “woods-time adventure,” had halted to a screeching stop.“DAVIE,” he tried a little louder again. “CRACK,” the snapping, squirrel-breaking of a branch above him sent him into a panicked frenzy and Henry began running madly, tears began streaming from his eyes and he couldn’t see clearly. ©2012 H.G.
He didn’t know that he was running straight for his favorite set of “dungeon,” rocks and that if he didn’t stop…His sneakered foot faltered on the broad edge of the tall drop and he shrieked internally and externally a loud breath was released. He closed his eyes tightly and braced himself for the fall and inevitable landing. Little did he know that at this height, the outcome of his fall might be very detrimental. A burst of brightness shone through his clenched lids, warmth surged through his body and the sound of what Henry thought was immense, downy feathers filled his ears. He felt extremely weightless for a moment and surrounded, suspended by the most pure white feathers he’d ever seen. Henry had been gathered up in the arms of his very own guardian angel and when he opened his eyes he’d not fallen at all but lay flat on his back in a pillow of old, fallen foliage. His eyes shone in the brightest and bluest of ways and he just lay there and blinked, trying to understand what had happened.“Henry!” David called out anxiously, from the edge of the field. “Yeah,” answered Henry, in a semi-daze, he gained his footing and stumbled in the direction of his brother’s voice, “coming,” he affirmed, as a drip dark, red blood hung from the small scratch on his chin. This little boy may not remember his incident and he may not realize that his guardian angel had saved his life that day but in the years to come he’d feel a familiar presence with him, he’d feel peace in the encrypted knowledge that he’s being protected. He’d recognize the feeling brought to the fore-front of his mind by different things he’d encounter, especially the overflowing swoosh of the wings of large birds. The sound of feathers brought an immediacy of the presence that he’d encountered that day, and in times like these, the separation between he and his angel was so very thin. ©2012 H.G.
I love that Hannah! Yesterday, I looked up into the sky and saw a wing of a cloud traversing the the sky, transparently enveloping our day! It had most intricate feathers along one edge and the other edge was smooth and graceful. I exclaimed to my family out on the greening grass to look at that cloud it is so beautiful! And then tears welled up in gratitude. I kept my face pointed to the sky while the tears pooled there.
This is SUCH a beautiful comment! Bless you!
FURIOHe broke away from the group, all of 3'7" and a mind of his own. Furio Cappuscalco was a rebel, but he was a determined young man who never took "NO" for an answer. His brother Fredo was being groomed for the "big chair", but the younger Cappuscalco would have none of it.The ties amongst the Cappuscalco family were strained to say the least, as the brothers were always at odds. And unfortunately for Fredo, Furio was the better connected of the two.The brothers shared a paper route. Fredo busted his hump to shill their newspapers, while Furio sat back and reaped the rewards, knowing that Fredo was easily intimidated. The elder was to the point of taking in with a neighbor boy and leaving Furio in the lurch, without his "taste" as he would lose his best earner in Fredo.Furio was furious, grabbing his brother by the collar and slapping him twice."Fredo. You're my brother and I love you... but NEVER take sides with anyone against the family again!"Furio released his older, taller sibling and walked away triumphantly, leaving Fredo cowering in the shadows.Furio had no fear. And with Mama Cappuscalco as his consigliere and his muscle, Furio had no need for fear.
"Oh Sammy, why did you need to fall in that mud?" asked is mother with the love voice only mother have. He was only 2 but he knew better. Sammy and his mother live in Londonderry, NH where the chilliness never leaves. Leaves change brilliant colors in the amazing autumn and the Snow glistens in the winter, when you can never get ebough dnow. In spring the forest turns brillian, viberant greens and you get every kind of flower you can imagine!It was late fall and Sammy just landed in a pile of squishy, gooey mud and his mother was upset, but lovingly upset. You know when you deside to play basketball on the house and a vase breaks, but you do not know how it happened. Ya, that kind. His mother scooped him up and Sammy screamed. His mother noew he was a born outdoorsman. She walked in, wiped his face and gave him a squeeze. Later on that day, his mother reflected on how he would grow up so fast and how he would want to have to leave eventually. She alost cried until Sammy entered the room and handed her a bunchload of leaves and gave her a hug She was so cheered up that she was speechless. The rest was history...