The Angels of the Bottom Land

“I think I’ll live in Arkansas, till the angels make it known, if my heart can stop its beating, and give me reason to go home’, Says the frail and little woman between her sisters on the porch. As if an answer to the statement, or a question that had no start. A rumble sounds in distant heavens. Could be a storm or the cherubim of the ark. “They could be moving in the bottom, near the tombs onto the right”, says the younger of the sisters, a nervous strain fills her eyes. In a chorus of trio moving, the three heads turn to look away, at the small family cemetery in the meadow oft halfway in their sight.

The sisters sit immobile in the slight evening breeze, the whining of a porch chain, rhymes to the tapping of the eldest feet. The meadow out before them, surrounded by Elm Branch Creek. Bubbling from some deep vale in the darkness beneath old seas. The June bugs sing of summer, the battle of the heat, beneath a nearby Elm tree, a shadow moves its feet. If time were not temperamental. In glades of simple green. Then the grass beyond the front porch would have seen Eden’s dreams. “Could be time for evening cobbler”, says the youngest sister fair, “I know it’s well before dinner, but somehow I don’t really care”. A low cloud moves like a curtain. Open to a late afternoon light blue sky. “There is an early moon brewing”, says the oldest sister with a sigh.

So, the three watch the meadow. They peer out carefully. Three in one they know what is there, and they observe the shimmer leave. “Would that be a man a standing by that old Elm tree”, says the youngest sister to no one listening, for one of them can’t breathe. The heat has turned and moved the shadow out near the cemetery, and the two watch one retrieved. The sky turns on a second to winter and then by the sun it’s seized. The phantom takes a soul on forever, and a spirit is received. Gently so tenderly the eldest sister controls a sneeze, turning she pats her middle sister upon her stiffing knee. “Comfort dear, we saw you flying, and soon we will be along, but first your younger sister and I are going to have some cobbler, it’s calling us with its song. – 05.20.2018 – דָּנִיֵּאל

66 thoughts on “The Angels of the Bottom Land

  1. I read a book several years back about porch stories, mostly from the American South. I have looked in vain to find it again or to remember the authors name. Your post reminded me so much of that wonderful book. Beautiful writing.

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  2. Sometimes, I set a spell upon the sofa swing on that porch. I eat my cobbler just before dinner. Oh look, my cobbler has turned to red wine! Sister left a few years ago, and now I am sensitive to time, to that old elm and and the coming evening’s breeze.
    Here, I sing the songs, all my favorites remembered. Singing louder than thunder, I feel free. After all, there’s no one left to hear, when I go off key.

    This is a lovely, peaceful piece you wrote! It has inspired my above words..

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  3. I enjoyed this Daniel, if you add some to it I would enjoy a book coming out of this type of material. I have always enjoyed the American South and the writing that comes out of that region. Big fan of Faulkner.

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  4. I had to stop and absorb the following words,”So, the three watch the meadow. They peer out carefully. Three in one they know what is there, and they observe the shimmer leave. “Would that be a man a standing by that old Elm tree”, says the youngest sister to no one listening, for one of them can’t breathe. ” I read and re-read them that moment was beautifully written Daniel.

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  5. Daniel, this was another favorite for me in your “sisters” them. I like the themes you establish, regarding the “Whitby Ladies”, the “Sisters” or even “the Hardy Boys”. That seems to be your greatest comfort zone. Shalom, Heather ❤

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  6. Daniel, this was a darling whimsical piece. I adore your description of the sisters, and the approach to the end of life for the middle sister. We should each be so fortunate. You have a wealth of stories and I am taken with each one, but your trips into Americana are absolutely the best. Much respect A. ❤

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    • Hi Abigail, I appreciate your kind remarks. The care of the family for one another in “the greatest generation and before is something, unfortunately missing in our culture today It is that lost tune in Americana of the past that I miss. As always thank you for reading and commenting.

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      • Dear Daniel,
        I would agree to the point of something lost in today’s culture when it comes to the caring for one another especially with family. The soul to soul touch points that have developed with communication and technology have taken that personal place and caring away. There is so much I instead of us wouldn’t you agree. ❤ A

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  7. Daniel you have once again written to my heart and my past. Shade, cobbler (peach) and the front porch swing with lovely grandmothers and aunts in attendance. The tales told, and the spirit of family was enduring throughout the end of that generation. Thank you my young friend for this piece, it reminds me of so much that was good. Bill

    Liked by 1 person

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