My Grandmother’s Kitchen

Today started off gray and rainy. I took my camera to my studio and began photographing a pair of salt and pepper shakers I inherited from my grandmother. I left the dust and grime on them and paid loving attention to the cracks in the ceramic. I sat for a moment, trying to visualize where in my grandmother’s kitchen these shakers had lived. On the shelf near the window above the sink?

The shakers are a pair of chickens, a rooster and a hen. They are white with swirls of black for eyes and feathers. Their “wings” are yellow.

My grandmother’s kitchen was always painted yellow. For years, the curtains were a pattern of red, green and gray. The fabric dated from the 1940s, most likely. When she was no longer able to arrange such things herself, I had the kitchen painted and bought new fabric to make new curtains. The fabric I bought had red cherries. I also bought some new wallpaper, also with a cherry theme.

My grandmother’s kitchen often had fresh flowers from her garden on the table. My grandmother was the kind of woman who kept a tablecloth on her table. Lilacs, sweet peas, or phlox in a small juice glass.

I have that juice glass in my cupboard. I fill it with water and go into my front yard. The lavender there is blooming. I deadhead the roses and bring in two sprigs of lavender blossoms and a single rose. I place the glass and the flowers next to my writing chair where, mornings, I confide my thoughts to my journal.

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