Everything You Need Is Everywhere You Are DSC_9107
Everything You Need Is Everywhere You Are
Noah was up early. For the first time in what seemed like a very long time, his first reaction upon opening his eyes was not to cough and continue coughing but simply to breathe deep and rejoice in awakening. The resident devilish tickle was absent both from his throat and from his chest. He felt light and unencumbered as a feather. He wanted to leap up from the bed and shout and dance around on the mattress, but just in time he remembered that he and his mama Delilah were sharing a bed. Because that's all the more room there had been in his grandparents' house, where they had come to and been living after Samuel his father had left them. So if he leaped up, he might wake her. And if he shouted, he might frighten her. And if he danced around, he would almost certainly step on her.
So he was very careful instead like a ghost to slip out of the covers and like a draft in a leaky house to leave a kiss on her cheek on the way out of the room.
Noah's grandfather Little Mac was feeling much the same. But he was well past the time when to leap up and dance on a bed would in any way figure in his perception of a homecoming to good health. He simply lay for a while and let the morning sun freely invade his sensibility, detonating a light show behind his eyelids and summoning his sweaty body out from under the smothering covers, before he got up and slipped on his robe and made his way down the stairs, holding onto the railing and being careful not to get ahead of himself and trip and fall.
"So, here we are again," he said to his grandson, who was sitting quietly in his pajamas on the polished oak floor looking out through the sliding glass doors at the sunrise.
"That's right," Noah said. "Here we are."
"Would you like me to make you a cup of whatever?" said Mac. "Tea, coffee, hot milk? I feel like a tint of the rare holy water myself. You know, as a way of thanking goodness. But I know that your grandmother might feel differently, it being so early and all, so I will confine my inexpressible delight at the demise of our sickness to whatever you're having."
"Granddaddy," said Noah, "I don't want anything. You could come and sit with me. But really, it's just like you said. Everything I need is everywhere I am."
"Did I say that?" said Little Mac, sitting down on the floorboards beside him.
"Yessir, you did," Noah said. "I didn't understand it 'cause I was sick, so sick I didn't feel like I had anything. But now I think I get it. Now I don't want anything. At least not right away."
"I'll make us some tea," said Little Mac. "In a minute. Not right away."
"Sure," said Noah, taking hold of his grandfather's hand by its thumb with his own smaller hand. "Hooray."
In a voice as restrained as his grandson's, with a gaze likewise cast outward into the brilliant seaside morning through the salt-hazed and spotted sliding glass doors as of the world's smallest crowd beholding the arrival of angels, Mac seconded Noah's emotion.
"Hooray," he whispered into the sun-driven shadows that the legs of the coffee table were sending into and over them. "And thank goodness for everything."
Noah squeezed his grandfather's thumb, and his grandfather nearly cried.
April, 2018, Friday the 13th
Prospect, Nova Scotia
Subcategory:Black & White
Keywords:and, black, canada, coffee, doors, floor, floorboards, glass, indoors, long, monochrome, nova, oak, polished, prospect, scotia, shadows, shining, sliding, sunrise, table, through, white, window, worn