Wednesday, May 04, 2005

Memory of Sunrise

Early one morning our father woke us up from our sleep. “Wake up, “ he said.

Outside it was dark and the stars shone like pale jewels in the sky.

“Come on,” he said. “We’re going to watch the sunrise.”

We stumbled from our beds, sleepy eyed, still in our pajamas. In our haste, we forgot to put on slippers, and I remember how my toes shrank from the dampness of the grass as we walked from the house to the edge of the mountain.

I have always been a sleepyhead. But that morning I felt as if it was the first morning of my life. How fresh was the scent of early morning air. A solemn hush lay over the sleeping world and even the trees seemed to have stopped growing. In that moment before the sun awoke, the world lay in halflit shadow while we waited with bated breath for the sun to show her face. It was like waiting for life to begin.

I remember the cold in the air, the wind brushing through the pine trees. My mind remembers inconsequential things, the way the dew clung to the grass and the vibrant violet hue of early crocuses.

Slowly, the sun arose in the east. A fiery glow filled the sky as she rose up from under the mountains. Radiant and warm, she brought with her, laughter and the joy of life. We lifted our faces to the sky and laughed as we welcomed the sun.

Suddenly, the world blazed with color and from the town below, we heard the sounds of a waking world. A cock crowing insistently, hens and chicks make chuckling sounds, a farmer calling to his wife and from the market place way down in the center of the town, the racketty chug-a-chug of the provincial bus starting up.

Above us, a chorus of melodic trills rose from a family of birds. A wind brushed through the trees and we found ourselves walking back to the house, our hands firmly grasped in the warmth of our father’s hands. The dew was gone and we hopped and skipped back to the house in our bare feet.

That first sunrise remains for us a constant token of our father’s love.

* I really miss you, Tay. I miss the long talks that we had. Somehow, the telephone can never replace just being there.


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