Just An Old Family Table? Poem by Bill Galvin

Just An Old Family Table?

The table is heavy, solid wood; six chairs, two with arms;
Built back in the day when things were meant to last.
It saw nine tough siblings grow up at, under, and on it,
From the fifties through the seventies;
Many meals, much homework, a dog to catch spillovers;
Not pretty, not even handsome; but utilitarian, hard-working.

It was from her family… not mine,
And we got it because she was so close to her mom,
And took good care of her at the end,
And she wanted to keep the family memory close.

So, now she is gone, too, and I'm moving on.

It is too big, old, ugly, or out of fashion for most today;
But, now it resides with a friend of one of her sisters,
Down on his luck, and he appreciates it a lot.

I kept the 5x8 rug the table stood upon.
It is a muted green with a floral center and borders,
Which appears to come from the 1930s.
I'm downsizing into a smaller space,
So, I'll roll this up and store it for possible future use.

I'm looking right now at the three-inch-square indentations…
The deep imprints left by the four table legs
While it was in our home the last fifteen years or so.
They appear deep enough, and the weave old enough,
That the material will never regain its original appearance.

The longer something stays, the deeper the impression.

The Earth, the Sky, the Oceans…
They are fluid, and ever-changing… and,
They all recover to regain balance after upheaval or storm,
With certain imprints from the event left behind.

And our Spirits, they hold dearly the deep imprints
Of genuinely lived lives, and Souls placed along our paths…
Some to walk part of this Journey with us…
Some to teach us…
They who leave impressions after a meaningful alliance,
As she did,
Which never fade… nor should they…
Nor could they.


Mike Smith 03 April 2016

The longer something stays the deeper the impression. A fascinating and beautiful piece of writing. Things don't really matter to us except for the memories that we have with them. This table has a whole world of memories stored in it for you. You have parted with the table, but not the memories. That is the important lesson. And better yet that the table has found itself a worthy home. Your wife manages to spread her love and goodwill even now. Excellent write

1 0 Reply
Bill Galvin 04 April 2016

Thanks, Mike... everything is more than first meets the eye.

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