Sunday, 23 March 2014

In Sunshine Flickers

It had been, some time 
since I had walked 
in fresh exuberant breezes.

The day was kind  
and smiled:

the sleepy trees  
stirred and stretched;

tufts of dry grass 
contended, indulgently,
with green whipper snapper shoots,
bursting about them;

and the air – the luscious air –
billowed through me,
cajoling dusty puffs of
winter soot from the cockles of my heart,

so that I felt restored.

My son, grown now to a man, 
walked with me:

something that, almost never,
happens . . . anymore.

And then, a lovely recollection
traipsed, in sunshine flickers,
across my mind – and I asked: 

Do you remember
how we would walk to the library? 

He grinned and, brushing
the bottom of my arm, replied: 

Afterwards we would walk
to the Red Lantern Cafe,
and you would buy me
wontons and plum sauce.

Yes, I remember.

That was a long, long time ago, I said. 
And my old heart soared. 

photo:  The Walking Path (the walking path in Jericho Beach Park in West Point Grey, just west of Kitsilano, Vancouver) – W. Bourke 

© 2014 Wendy Bourke


  1. smiles....wontons...i love them...we used to get them at a little chinese place called heaven when i was a kid...smiling with you at sharing the walk...and the memories....

  2. Actually, I had that conversation with one of my sons, just yesterday. I had my children (4 in 4 years - and he is a twin) so I tried to do some one-on-one outings with each of them. He was quite little at the time, and I was surprised yesterday when we talked and he remembered that time together. It was, for some reason, a very, very nice feeling.

    And yes, wontons - after he brought them up, I talked my husband into making a batch with me sometime this week. I can't wait!

  3. I think being with my grandson for almost 2 weeks has heightened my mother emotions...this had me crying by the end.

    1. I puddled up a wee bit myself. One gets to a certain age and the knowledge that one will leave behind others who carry a precious moment you shared - matters in a way, in never occurred to you that it would, when you were young.

  4. it feels heavenly when someone treasures those little this promenade
    down memory lane.....

  5. Heavenly. I couldn't have described the feeling better, myself. Thanks Sumana.

  6. I teared up too reading this. Beautiful...just perfect.

  7. When you get - that they got it (whenever that is . . . and whatever it was) - it's always, pretty cool!

  8. here's what happened when I read your lovely poem. thanks!

    the air
    billowed through me,
    cajoling dusty puffs of
    winter soot from the cockles of my heart

  9. Ah-h-h-h - Love it! Thanks, Janet.

  10. A wonderful memory, Wendy. It must feel so good when a memory of yours is remembered by your son as well, what was important to you was important to him as well. My heart would soar too. Smiles!

  11. That's so true, Mary. From time to time, in the hours and hours I have spent trying to shower a bit of joie de vivre upon a little child I have (on occasion) found myself wondering: is he even going to remember this? And, I know that's not really the point - the point being: that loving children become loving adults when they are surrounded by love in loving situations. Still, it's wonderful when they actually DO remember.

  12. Such a beautiful memory.. and the confirmation when you share the memory too. It must have been a warm fondness for your son as well.. maybe he felt exactly the same... a confirmation of the importance... Love the way you portray it in the gentlest of tones..

  13. What we remember and what we forget - is a bit of a puzzle to me. But I have found that, often, the gentlest memories return in peaceful moments.