Springtime – For Ellie and Evie.


I have a cold. I have not had a cold in perhaps twenty years. I am not going to blame the Michigan weather for my malady. In fact, when I said something snide and nasal this morning like, “Michigan weather sure keeps you guessing,” I got a lecture from David that in Michigan there are “true seasons” and the transition from winter to spring is like “bathing a baby.”  The preparation for spring is afoot, apparently. Soon he says, I will walk down the street oohing and ahhing from the splendor of nature’s gifts. Right now it is sticky and raining. David is not usually that flowery so I think he was being a bit defensive…

Anyway, I was without inspiration until I saw that Kim had shared a Waking Up the Ghost post from a year ago. The post was about “Trust” and it was written for Nick and Ellie and Evie who were struggling at the time with the concept. I think they may have been questioning whether Nick would drink again, and whether my motives were true (because they are/were all very smart and they questioned everything…). I wrote the post to remind them that in this world there are people you can trust, and that I was one of them.


Who Do You Trust?

So much has happened in my relationship with Nick and his girls. He died and they went away. There is not much more I can say on the subject. Ellie and Evie are two people who are probably finding it hard to trust these days. They have had so much trauma in their young lives. Their mother died, their father became an alcoholic and just when they were beginning to hope and trust and regain their lives, their father died suddenly.

Suddenly is a word Ellie and Evie know all too well.

And suddenly those innocent girls were gone: courts and documents and guardianships. It’s all secret I guess and I can’t say anything about the person who took them away from everything they trust. I will say that not being able to communicate with Ellie and Evie, not getting their poems and remarkable wisdom is like a gaping hole. I try not to think of them too much. They are in a box and it is only on mornings like this when I am feeling vulnerable and I am reminded that they trusted me, that I open the box and venture a peak inside…

If you are reading this girls, if you can find a way to a computer to read this, I am thinking of you. Trust, like memories and spring cannot be put on a plane and taken away. Trust and love and who you really are, is not something that can be erased from a page in homeschool. It’s spring and I don’t feel well and the box I put you in is opened for good. The truth is I think of you more often than I’d like – it’s too painful. I feel too frustrated by my inability to make things right for you.

I won’t say it is all going to be okay. I won’t even say that you can trust me (because what is trust without comfort?). I will say it is almost spring…

Spring is like a perhaps hand
(which comes carefully
out of Nowhere)arranging
a window,into which people look(while
people stare
arranging and changing placing
carefully there a strange
thing and a known thing here)and

changing everything carefully

spring is like a perhaps
Hand in a window
(carefully to
and fro moving New and
Old things,while
people stare carefully
moving a perhaps
fraction of flower here placing
an inch of air there)and

without breaking anything.

From “Spring is like a perhaps hand” by E.E. Cummings

Today I’m not drinking because spring is coming…

How come you’re not drinking?