Sunday, January 14, 2007

Sunday . . .

I have a t-shirt that says "Sunday . . ." that's been around for over a decade. A sad confession, but true. I also have decade-old shoes I still wear, sweaters from the 90s (80s even?) that never see the light of day, and dresses from college I will certainly never wear again. We have always been on a tight budget, so there is a fear of getting rid of anything, especially clothes, because what if you actually need it again some day?

This t-shirt used to be worn (white, with a tiny script of a word) just about every Sunday when I lived in Chicago. I was dating my husband, and that day was "couples day." We'd hang out and read the paper, walk along the lake front (depending on the weather), eat at this great delicatessen that you had to wait and wait just to get into. The day was truly a day of rest.

Now our Sunday rituals are few, or maybe they just don't seem like rituals. Responsibilities? Even obligations? We try to sleep in until 7:00 and then attempt to have the kids eat something healthyish. This morning my husband and I managed to have a cup of coffee at the kitchen table, across from each other, alone, just talking. It brought me back . . .

The kids' favorite ritual is watching "This Old House" - oh how times have changed.

What Proximity Brings

j.b. rowell

Every Sunday morning, a neighbor sweeps
the side of the road, the cement edge
where leaves and trash collect, with a broom
and a bucket just for this ritual occasion.

He talks to everyone. Explains what he is doing,
why, makes sure everything is ship-shape
for the week. Nods at thank yous. Stops
at the corner and turns back, a final check.

I want to know this clockwork, a life so geared,
that on a self-appointed day, just after sunrise,
I head out to tidy periphery
and take trash home.

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Blogger Pat Paulk said...

What an unusual ritual. Love the last line!!

7:12 AM, January 15, 2007  
Blogger J.B. Rowell said...

Yes Pat - very unusual! I found myself almost jealous that he the had time . . . thanks.

6:45 AM, January 16, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I remember the tshirt and now that deli is our son's favorite restaurant. Sundays are certainly different then they used to be, but we still consider them a day of rest.

Ditch the old clothes girl...the memories are not in the clothes, but in your mind. You'll never don't forget anything! I love you! 3/17/07.

11:02 PM, January 25, 2007  
Blogger J.B. Rowell said...

No, I can never part with the t-shirt! But definitely some other clothes like, um, a sequins dress or two . . . :) I think the deli closed, along with the record store above it . . . I love you too!

6:53 AM, January 26, 2007  

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