Picnic Table

I’ve lived in lovely old Greenbelt for over 13 years and had this table in the yard for around 10 years. We eat out here probably two or three times a year when we have guests and the weather’s not too hot or cold. Tonight it will be good I think, 82 and slight breeze, nephew Philip’s last day and newlyweds Duff & Mary coming.

Jim & I or Mom & I play Scrabble out here once or twice a year. But most of the time this sturdy, Amish-built boat-shaped table with its continuous bench sits empty. When Seren was here he and Jim excitedly exclaimed, pointing and laughing every morning at birds and squirrels nibbling yellow popcorn (from a movie theater trash bagful a senior friend gave me).

Some may say the table is most photogenic covered in white. But I frown for the moisture-ravaged wood. Why did I stop varnishing it or covering it with a tarp? It’s turning gray like our name and our hair with green mold tinges like the hedge, grass, moss, and trees all around.

I remember that first time we ate out there with Judah. He was probably around 8 or 9 and said it was the best dinner he ever had. Several years later the table came in handy as Judah nailed together pieces of our new shed.

Once or twice more friends from church came than could fit around the table, and we set up Jim’s old table plus a card table. I think Byung Jae and Nah Oak, who are now back in Korea, were here one of those times, and marveled at the towering willow oaks, planted in the late 30’s when our co-op homes were built.

This week I’m newly grateful for the table as the Spirit has drawn me here daily for an hour of joyous writing.

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