Margaret's Table

Margaret's Table

My mother’s table held sustenance for a family of four, holiday hams and turkeys for the whole clan, birthday cakes to celebrate our progress and growth.

My mother‘s table held cups of tea with fresh banana bread and homemade hermits to share with her three sisters, while weaving the threads of their lives in ever stronger bonds.

My mother‘s table held posterboard, markers and pencils, for the art projects of her two girls; the ephemera of communal craft making as we three fashioned bird cages and topiary trees for family showers.

My mother‘s table held us fast to its perimeter as we ate our morning grapefruit and Cheerios, tomato soup and grilled cheese sandwiches for school- day lunches, and for supper, fragrant Italian dishes learned from her mother-in-law. 

My mother‘s table held the vibrations of laughter, game playing, and fun from the generations  who gathered there.

My mother‘s table held the tension of an unwanted change, the absence of a father, the addition of a new man in the family.

My mother’s table held kindness and compassion as my sister and I kept her company over jigsaw puzzles and coloring books when she drifted into a shadowed, compromised perception of the world.

Now my mother’s table holds us still, in the dining room of my home. I wipe its smooth surface, remembering the care she gave it, and the care she gave to us. This simple table has seen much, knows much. It is a living witness to our ways of being together. As we sit shoulder to shoulder around its familiar curves, I imagine all the vibrations absorbed by this sturdy maple servant. They emanate and caress us with warm, grounded comfort, connecting all who gather here. 

Author: Julie Cook

Photo: Libby Penner on Unsplash                  

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