they left her by the picture window, the sun slowly slipping out of sight behind the blanket of trees that would keep it warm through the night. she did not mind these brief moment of solitude after dinner, in the chair her husband had made for her out in his shop. it reminded her of him, carrying the scent of his labor.
her fingers played along the smooth surface of a glass globe, finding comfort in its curves. it was not quite perfect, she always found the little nicks, rubbing them, not to erase them but appreciate their existence. it just seemed right, as life was not perfect, and you could either dwell on the imperfections or let them add to the beauty.
the shuffle of his feet let her know she would soon no longer be alone. he was trying to be stealthy, sneaking up on her, as he always did, to surprise her with a 'boo' and collapse under his giggles. he was getting so big, so quick.
"gramma!", the enthusiasm in his voice brought a gentle smile to her face.
"well hello, my handsome young man. won't you come sit with me."
"whatcha got?", he asked climbing into the nook of her lap, his fingers tracing the treasure between her fingers.
"oh it is something special that your grandpa and i picked up in our travels.", she could almost taste the wonder that poured out of him. "why don't you tell me what you see?"
"is it a magical egg?", he asks, not wanting to be wrong.
"why yes, it is. what do you see inside it?"
"there is a brave hero. he is dressed in the most amazing cape that makes him look like a fish and he is off to rescue the princess. he is swimming, and the water is so clear you can see forever. a bad wizard doesn't want him to save her and so he is stretching his big red hands out of the rocks to try and catch him."
"oh my! does he save her?"
"yes he does. he fools the bad man and they live happily ever after. the end."
"what a wonderful story. i love it when you tell me a story.", he shifts in her lap to look at her, as she speaks.
"gramma, is it hard being blind?"
"no, not when you are here to be my eyes."
"will i be blind?"
"not if you take care of your eyes and always use them to capture the magic in the world around you."
that is enough to satisfy his curiosity, slipping from her lap, his feet clop across the floor, out the door, in search of another adventure. yes, she loved these quiet moments at the end of the day.
"whatcha doing dad?"
"just thinking about gramma", i answer without turning my gaze from the horizon, the globe heavy in my grasp with the weight of her passing.
"it's just a...", my words almost choke me with the sudden realization that with those careless syllables i have become just as blind to the magic of this world, as happens with many reaching adulthood. sitting my burden on the table, i pull my son into my lap, then place it in his hands.
"why don't you tell me what you see..."
This is a Magpie Tale.