Like every EMT/firefighter you’ve ever met, I am pretty much obsessed with my profession; I have the requisite bumper stickers and tee shirts, even a collectible “Roy and Johnny” toy fire helmet. Birthdays involve extrication gloves, stethoscopes, EMS pants, and my yahoo page is littered with updates from every department within a seventy mile radius.
In fact, HERE is the article that hit my inbox the other day and became the inspiration for this blog.
You don’t have to read the whole thing, lol! Not that it isn't well written – truly, it is. And God knows, I can actually relate to most of it, as can almost any emergency worker. But it is, perhaps, a tad melodramatic, no? Maybe somewhat officious? All of which lead my partner and I, regrettably, to play with it. I share with you now the unfortunate results:
Tonight is the night.
I step outside, barefoot on a lawn soft as grave dirt, to inhale the faintly piquant lemon of magnolias and hear the frog song. A thousand chirring, peeping, cheering voices that hold me enthrall, errands forgotten, while all the summers of my life shuttle past, swift and rolling as the downhill rush of a spring-fed creek.
“They’re here,” my mother, daughter, grandmother would say – day gentling into evening, a sky the color of tea roses and violets, and through it all, the song. “Summer’s coming.”
Oh, summer. The languid air in the valley has a presence that is very nearly tangible, and is at least half made-up of memory. My mother played in this yard as a little girl in the years just following the Great Depression. Hair in a smooth Scout Finch bob, neat patches on her cotton dress, fingers blackberry-stained. The frog song brings the little girl back, and I can see her almost as plainly as I see my own children –
Here in the same yard, beneath the magnolia, and trailing up the hill after lightning bugs, their shouts jubilant enough to puncture the soul, to suck the heart out.
I think that the happiest moments in our lives are overlaid with the deepest sorrow, as though we need to experience the depth of one in order to feel the other. Time wounds us, always, simply by its forward motion.
Who on earth first applied the word “croak” to that sound? And could it be further from the truth?
Importing my blog onto the new website has been quite the feat. My team and I are still in the process of categorizing and fine-tuning the years of posts you'll find here. We hope you enjoy our work-in-progress library. Check back soon for updates!