* I’m usually a creative non-fiction or poetry kind of gal, but here is a short piece I wrote. Just thought I’d share. Any suggestions or comments are more than welcome.*
Kyle walked rapidly towards the gate. Holding his airline ticket in one hand and his carry on bag with his lap top in the other. He just barely made it. He sat down in the aisle seat, took a deep breath and let it out. It felt good to finally be able to relax for a moment and catch his breath. He had gone straight from a meeting as the company’s head web designer, hopped in a taxi, and straight to the airport.
He was on his way home to rural North Carolina to see his mother. He would miss some things from the city, but he was so looking forward to being back home. The small house where he had grown up as a boy. The brief moment of happiness was slightly sullied as he thought about why he was going. He and his sister had been discussing placing mother in a nursing home as her health was declining and there was no one nearby to help her. He didn’t blame his sister. She lived further away than he did and was busy trying to raise two young children. She was lucky if she could get a shower herself some days. No other options and he couldn’t do it as he had a overloaded work load now that he had got the promotion. It was just one of those sad facts.
The plane landed a few hours later. After picking up his luggage he headed to look for Mr. Sullivan. He was a farmer down the road from his mother, an old family friend, who had offered to come pick him up from the airport and take him home. He remembered spending a few summers working on Mr. Sullivan’s farm as a teenager. Farming was sure hard work, especially in the hot North Carolina summers, but Mr. Sullivan was a good fair man and his wife sure could make some delicious fresh lemonade. He had been so sorry to hear she had passed last year.
He quickly spotted Mr. Sullivan. He really hadn’t changed much, just a little older, and was still wearing those same denim bib coveralls. They shook hands and headed to the beat up old light blue pickup truck with farm use tags. After tossing his luggage in the back of the pickup, they started the half hour drive towards home. It passed quickly as they caught up on the present and talked of days past. He enjoyed again seeing fields of green grass with cows lazily grazing. Once they passed the dilapidated tobacco barn with the kudzu running rampant, he knew they were almost there.
He told Mr. Sullivan thanks for the lift and headed inside to see his mother. He briefly glanced at the little white house. It had fallen into a state of disrepair since his father had passed. The white paint was flaking in spots and the porch steps were slightly bowed from time. His mother’s garden was in bloom with a rainbow of color. She loved tending to her flowers, especially her roses, but it had become more difficult as evidenced by the overgrowth of weeds creeping through in places they had never been allowed before. He would see if he couldn’t tend to the garden some while he was down.
The screen door creaked as he opened it and before he could knock, his mother opened the door. She told him, “Oh Kyle, come on in. I’ve missed you so.” He bent down a little to give his mother a big hug. She took him to the kitchen and gave him a plate with fried chicken, navy beans, and collards. In between bites the two of them caught up on lost time. Being there with his mother was like he never left. She was still his mother, strong in spirit, though a little bent with time and a bit slower moving these days.
In those moments he realized he couldn’t even bring himself to ask his mother what he had come for. She had always given her all to her children and family. His mother deserved better and somehow he would make it work. He could take his saved up vacation time off from work till he figured up a plan. Who knew, maybe he could start up the home business he had always dreamed of. He knew it was his time to give back a little. He knew he was home where he belonged once again.