for Linnea's Lights Blog Contest
The most haunting, endearing remnants of childhood are the fragrances imprinted permanently upon our brains, called up again and again, floods of memories, at every familiar whiff.
Suddenly I'm 4 again, peering up at my mother as she brews fresh coffee in a pyrex percolator on the stovetop, cinnamon coffeecake in the oven. After-work hugs from my steelworker father, faint scent of oil on his hands. I'm 6, watching grandpa change a tire on a hot summer day, machine shed air of diesel, gasoline.
Humid August, heavy with the musty breath of cornfields. Searching for newly-laid eggs in sweet straw beds under placid hens. Running barefoot in freshly tilled garden, rich black Illinois soil, popping sun-warmed raspberries into mouths with berry-stained hands.
Climbing trees, smells of leaves and bark, playing endless hours on carpets of freshly-mown grass with apple-blossom breezes, then, worn-out, coming in to dinner prepared lovingly by grandma, aromas of the old country.
|photo from underground.com|