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A call from the light

   The first chilly winds of Autumn blew through our summer clothes as my son and I came out of the doors of Wal-Mart into the parking lot.  As we walked the jungle of imports, attempting to locate our Hyundai,  a wind  blew again though the darkened lot.  The wind made a queer sound as it blew pass the overhead lights.  It was a ghostly siren call.  It awoke a memory in me,  a memory of a childhood friend.

   His proper name was Thurston Lee Hull the third,  but he went by “Lee” or by “Fat Albert” if we were in a teasing mood.  Lee had juvenile diabetes when we were six years old, and was already taking insulin shots.  He didn’t seem to be overly bright to me,  but I found that he had a  truly poetic heart.  We would play ball,  emulating our favorite football stars … Craig Morton, Bob Hayes,  Walt Garrison, Don Meredith.  One Fall evening while we played a game of street football,  the wind blew with that same eerie pitch.  Lee said that it was the sound of the souls that have passed on,  coming back to share our lives with us. .  Since Lee’s words commanded respect with us, we immediately became worried that evil spirits would be in that group of souls. and after us.  Lee calmed our fears by saying that all the bad spirits where in that hot place. (children’s way of saying hell, because hell was still a curse word in 1968)  They were only the spirits of our Dads, Moms, Granny, Brothers, and Aunts, and Uncles watching over us and this was the time they could to come watch us play . It was an odd moment., the kind of moment that sticks out in your memory,  like a jagged piece of a broken window pane. I had visions of my cousin Margaret, Old Mr. Blue, even Sister Wren the Head Usher from our church, who had died just recently.  I wondered if that moment froze for all of us. Or was it just me?

   Anyway, we played until we were told to come in, and each of us went on with our lives,  but that siren call made me think of all of us kids.  There were ten of us out there playing for the 1968 Mills Projects Cowboys that night, Carlton died in our sophomore  year in 1977,  Marvin (we called him Wheels because no one could catch him) got killed breaking in an arcade to play a game in 1980,  James died in a prison riot in 1993,  Mike died of AIDS in 2002,  Thurston Lee the third, died of Congestive Heart Failure in 2003,  Stanley died  at home of a Heart attack in 2007 . As I write this,  there are four of us left alive.  But do you know that I felt as though all of us were  together again,  in that Wal-Mart parking lot,  the night I heard the siren call.

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7 thoughts on “A call from the light

  1. Pingback: A call from the light « Through the looking glass

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