The Husband and I both love the grasses that grow in our fields. Including the period when we were looking for a place and before we moved here in August, we have now seen the fields in each of the seasons. I can’t decide which is my favorite time to admire them. We enjoy gazing at the meadow from the windows in the living room. (Yes, I know these rooms are now called “great rooms”. I don’t think I can ever get used to that phrase. Ours is destined to be down-graded to a good old-fashioned “living room”. Well, at least I am a little past calling it the parlor.) I love wading through the grass to head for the hiking trail, or the trees at the edge of our place, or just wandering about in it and getting down low to look into it, rather than over it. In some places, I don’t have to get down very low to accomplish that point of view.
While looking at the photo above, it struck me why I may be so captivated by the simple grasses. A memory flashed into my mind—a memory as sharp in intensity as if it were from yesterday, but made as deliciously hazy by time as some parts of the image.
When I was very young— probably about four years old, my father took a short-term job in northern Louisiana. We were new in the neighborhood and I was just beginning to develop a keen curiosity about my surroundings, a longing for independence, and a taste for adventure—a potentially dangerous cocktail of tastes for a four-year-old.
One day, while we were very new to the area, my mother and I walked a short distance to meet a neighbor. I remember I enjoyed immensely both the walk and the lady we met. I’m not certain why meeting the lady was so special, but I suspect she gave me a great deal of attention—possibly fed me cookies, who knows. I do recall that the walk was wonderful partly because it included a stretch down a narrow path through a field of grass so high that I, of course, could not see over it. The yellow grass swaying around me hid me from the rest of the world and made me feel that I was in a special, secret, and magical land made just for me and one where adventure waited around every curve.
It turns out that I enjoyed the visit and the journey so much, I decided the next day to repeat it—alone. I didn’t think it necessary to share my plans with anyone. I just struck out across our tiny yard and along the narrow path. Of course, my young mother was frightened within an inch of her life when she discovered that I had disappeared. But, up until the time she found me, I had a simply marvelous time (the getting caught part I don’t remember well—only that it was unpleasant) and I suppose I have never forgotten the enchantment of getting lost in the shimmering golden grasses, luminous in the afternoon light.