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A Smoky Memory

Unable to sleep I remember-
My mind flashes back to many things;
Such wonderful gifts – our memory,
Salvation and life with all it brings

It is nighttime of long ago
Before electricity the coal oil lamp burns
Sitting up on the mantle that’s dressed
With a white embroidered skirt

Snuffed out when time for bed and sleep
The smoky scent of coal oil remains;
Soon sleep comes lasting to morning
When the scent of coal oil and coal awakens

The bedroom was in the living room
Nearer the coal burning stove and heat,
Soon the coldness of winter would come
As under the thick covers we slept

My mind remembers but I wonder
“Why is this so?” It was long ago;
Yet, it seems precious that old scene
My mind’s eye sees and recalls aglow

The irony is that the heat was temporary
While the night’s sleep was continuous
Now, the heat is automatic,
But the sleep is strenuous

I sit to write out my memory
A septuagenarian night gone by
With only a coal oil lamp flickering
In the recesses of my minds’ eye
                            -Evelyn Pearl 

Copyright © E. Pearl Anderson | Year Posted 2018


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  1. Date: 7/7/2018 10:37:00 PM

    Hi Pearl.. We live in a crazy, sometimes scary, world of reality. But here on this page is another world.. one of wonder, creativity, adventure, and imagination. Stoping in and checking out your skillful write is the highlight of my day!