Monday, September 17, 2012

HAPPY 85th BIRTHDAY, DAD (published 9-17-2012; article #65)

Dad would have been 85 years old today. Happy Birthday, Dad!

Three of the four of us brothers gathered at "the home place" for a little while yesterday afternoon. I stopped by the gravesite on your and Mom's anniversary. It's a rainy Monday, and I'm here in Johnson City, alone, without my "little Georgie," due to work training. It's almost over, only eight more days. I feel empty, pensive, and sad.

When will the circle be unbroken? By and by, Lord, by and by. There’s a better home awaitin’, in the sky, Lord, in the sky. As a ten-year-old boy, I remember you and your brothers, my uncles, talking about that song, around Papaw Ferrell’s passing. For some reason, I remember standing in the front yard, at the ol’ Livesay place, near the big walnut tree by the garden entrance, with that song going through my mind.

You often kept your thoughts about your parents, after their deaths, just seven months apart, to yourself, rarely opening up to us. How did you feel, when you were my age now, after your parents were both gone? You never seemed to meet a stranger, and you could get that Irish dander up, but what about your pensive side? I knew it was there, but I respected your privacy.

Dad, I’d like to sit around the living room talking, after eating one of your good Sunday afternoon dinners, as we used to do, after Mom passed. Heck, I’d like to sit around at the home place, with you, Mom, both sets of grandparents, us four boys, and the next generation of young ‘uns. Wouldn’t that be something, for Granny and Papaw Wood and Granny and Papaw Ferrell to see the youngest generation?

For now, I’ll let that thought comfort me. I’ll reminisce. Maybe I’ll have my upbeat spunk back tomorrow. Until then, may God grant the whole Ferrell clan a wonderful, beyond imaginably joyful great reunion day, up there, where you, Mom, your all’s parents, and so many others are already “waiting,” celebrating already!