I’m not sure when Mom wrote this since it isn’t labeled. Uncle Curtis died in 1991, just days before we returned to Oklahoma, so that gives us a timeframe of sorts. Many of you know that Mom represented the third generation of her family to write for the paper. And some of her siblings and other family members have also written for publication. I’m happy to say that I have samples of much of their work. Her grandfather was not only a writer, but quite an opinionated one when it came to local politics!
Many of my best memories of Mom are of her working at the typewriter or scrawling out notes in the margins of her manuscripts. I think her writing influenced more people than she ever realized.
Flowers Along the Way
By Colleen Simmons
“We hold reunions not for the dead, for there is nothing in all the earth that you and I can do for the dead. They are past our help and past our praise. We can add to them no glory; we can give to them no immortality. They do not need us, but forever and forever more we need them.” Garfield (president)
When I first began filling Della Springer’s column space my Dad cautioned me, “Now, Sis, try to write about happy times…your mother always had Uncle Eb with his funny jokes and kind of left-handed sayings…and most people have more than enough trouble in their lives without readin’ more in the paper.”
But since losing Mama and Daddy and my brother Curtis, I’ve become better acquainted with death, and although it isn’t a happy subject, we need to talk about it. I’ve found that this “end of life’ is easier to bear if we make up our minds to accept the loss of our loved ones…to cherish our good memories of them.
Sometimes I think our first response to death is a focusing on ourselves. We are overwhelmed by this empty place in our lives. We feel a very painful guilt about “all the things we should have done” and now it’s too late.
Instead of wasting hours with regret I have found that memory can take me for another visit to our home place on Liberty Hill. I can open the old screen door and Mama will be there with open arms and Daddy will be sitting in his easy chair. I can shut my eyes and “see” Curtis laughing and enjoying himself at a family gathering or standing in the pulpit being a guest speaker.
Memories are a precious gift. And so let’s all try to leave some happy recollections for our loved ones.