Also see Memories,Scrapbooking and Heritage Albums.
The tide recedes, but leaves behind bright seashells on the sand.
The sun goes down, but gentle warmth still lingers in the land,
The music stops, and yet it echoes on in sweet refrains . . .
For every joy that passes, something beautiful remains.
The camera is carefully purchased,
recording first steps,
a toothless grin,
the Grand Canyon at dusk;
last-ever chance and
focusing a moment in time
on which to hang our
(We don't count the cost of film and developers.)
But wait--which shoe box holds
our middle child's 16th birthday?
Why is yellow staining the
the many-hued honeymoon sunset of
ten years ago dissolving
into streaks of red?
And who is this lady looking at
us so solemnly from her fur--
topped flapper costume?
(Have we built our mountains of remembrances on foundations of sand?)
They shut the road through the woods
Seventy years ago.
Weather and rain have undone it again,
And now you would never know
There once was a road through the woods
Before they planted the trees.
It is underneath in the coppice and heath,
And the thin anemones.
Only the keeper sees,
That where the ring-dove broods,
And the badgers roll at ease,
There was once a road through the woods.
Yet, if you enter the woods
Of a summer evening late,
When the night-air cools on the trout ringed pools
Where the otter whistles his mate
(They fear not men in the woods
Because they are so few)
You will hear the beat of a horse's feet
And the swish of a skirt in the dew,
Steadily cantering through
The misty solitudes
As though they perfectly knew
The old lost road through the woods . . .
But there is no road through the woods.
Ye that through your hearts to-day
Feel the gladness of the May!
What though the radiance which was once so bright
Be now for ever taken from my sight,
Though nothing can bring back the hour
Of splendour in the grass, of glory in the flower;
We will grieve not, rather find
Strength in what remains behind
From magazines, newspapers and periodicals
Stored in boxes and baskets,
Like strangely bound encyclopedia;
Poems and proverbs, axioms and wisdom,
Words to live by, prayers and wisdom,
Carl Sagan's comments, Newton's Law,
Recipes and herbal cures, Shakespearean lines.
Like a scalpel,
Sharpened scissors cutting along the neurons of the mind,
Gathering random thoughts, interests, desires,
Outlining a personality in printers ink.
Old things are more beautiful
than many things brand new
Because they bring fond memories
of things we used to do.
Old photographs in albums,
love letters tied with lace
Recapture those old feelings
that new ones can't replace.
Baby shoes, a Teddy bear,
a ring that grandma wore,
Are treasures waiting there behind
a door marked "Nevermore".
Old things are more beautiful,
more precious day-by-day.
Because they are the flowers
we planted yesterday.
Up in the attic
Down on my knees
Lifetimes of boxes
Timeless to me.
Letter and photographs
Yellowed with years
Some bringing laughter
Some bringing tears.
Time never changes
The memories, the faces
Of loved ones, who bring to me
All that I come from
And all that I live for
And all that I'm going to be.
My precious family
Is more than an heirloom to me.
(Joy Belle Burgess)
This covered bridge, quaint and weatherworn,
Still lends its dignity and charm
To the quiet country road
That winds past meadowland and farm.
And within the stream's full melody
That echoes against its darkened walls,
It hears the tramplings of a yesteryear
Faintly above the waters' splash and fall.
And still resound the clopping hooves
Against its heavy planks;
The creaking wheels of loaded carts,
And laughter along the sun-drenched banks.
Even yet it heeds the low sweet song
Of a bygone day's rememberings,
When a swaying hay cart left its drifts
And farmers tarried to talk of crops and things.
This covered bridge, quaint and weather-worn,
Still stands with dignity and charm,
Though its split and seasoned timbers
Shelter only blackbirds that fly 'tween field and farm
And glints of sunlight are all that move
Across its timeworn planks . . . but still it hears
Above the waters' splash and fall,
Faint echoings of long-remembered years.
I treasure sweet old memories
As time goes swiftly by.
A few bring smiles of happiness
And some tears to the eye.
They all are precious in their way,
Reopening doors of old
That have been shut these many years--
What pictures they unfold!
These dear old, sweet old memories
All play their special part
In bringing joy and opening up
The latch strings of the heart.
What stories could these bridges tell
If they could only talk?
They'd tell us of the ones who rode
And those who had to walk,
The rich, the poor . . . those in-between
Who used their planks to cross,
The soldiers, farmers, businessmen
In buggies, sleighs, by "hoss",
Like sentinels these bridges stand
In spite of flood and fire,
Their rugged, stalwart strength remains
Our future to inspire.
(Ethel K. Gosney)
The old family album
Once was prominently displayed
With its cover of red velvet
Trimmed in gleaming silken braid.
Every parlor had a table
Filled with shells and a paperweight,
And the album of your ancestors
Anchored like a ship of state.
There were old tin types of Grandma,
Aunts and uncles and cousins too . . .
And Grandpa with his cane and derby,
Fancy vest and button shoes.
Yes, the old family album
Once held its rightful place
In an old-fashioned parlor
Amid souvenirs and lace.
So if you're tired of travel
And your world seems closing in . . .
Bring out the family album
With the tin types of your kin.
(Grace E. Easley)
Memories are heartbeats
Sounding through the years
Echoes never fading
Of our smiles and our tears.
Moments that are captured
Pictured in an album
Or a lock of hair.
Images that linger
Deep within the mind
Bit of verse we cherished
Once upon a time.
Through the musty hallways
Of the days we knew
Ever comes the vision
Beautiful and true.
Memories are roses
Full of fragrant sweetness
Never known before.
Life must have a meaning
Goals for which to strive
Memories are lights that burn
To keep the heart alive.
How some things
The corner of your heart--
The green eyes of
A boy who kissed you
Twice in the rain
By a great aunt
Who used to say
"Dearie, don't put
Finger marks on
Songs you used to sing
On snow-covered hills
Near you grandfather's
Lie loosely buried
(© 1997 Pamela Harazim)
Come, look with me inside this drawer,
In this box I've often seen,
At the pictures, black and white,
Faces proud, still, serene.
I wish I knew the people;
These strangers in the box,
Their names and all their memories
Are lost among my socks.
I wonder what their lives were like.
How did they spend their days?
What about their special times?
I'll never know their ways.
If only someone had taken time
To tell who, what, where, when,
These faces of my heritage
Would come to life again.
Could this become the fate
Of the pictures we take today?
The faces and the memories
Someday to be tossed away?
Make time to save your pictures,
Seize the opportunity when it knocks,
Or someday you and yours could be
The strangers in the box.
There's a place within our hearts
Where we keep our favorite memories,
The ones that never fail to make us smile --
And when life becomes too hectic
It's such a special feeling
To close our eyes and reminisce awhile.
When summer turns to winter,
And the present disappears,
The laughter we were glad to share
Will echo through the years.
Though other nights,
And other days,
May find us gone our separate ways,
We will have these moments to remember.
(© 1996 Marilyn K. Walker)
A clothesline was a news forecast
To neighbors passing by.
There were no secrets you could keep
When clothes were hung to dry.
It also was a friendly link
For neighbors always knew
If company had stopped on by
To spend a night or two.
For then you'd see the fancy sheets
and towels on the line;
You'd see the comp'ny table clothes
With intricate design.
The line announced a baby's birth
To folks who lived inside
As brand new infant clothes were hung
So carefully with pride.
The ages of the children could
So readily be known
By watching how the sizes changed
You'd know how much they'd grown.
It also told when illness struck,
As extra sheets were hung;
Then nightclothes, and a bathrobe, too,
Haphazardly were strung.
It said, "Gone on vacation now"
When lines hung limp and bare.
It told, "We're back!" when full lines sagged
With not an inch to spare.
New folks in town were scorned upon
If wash was dingy gray,
As neighbors raised their brows, and looked
But clotheslines now are of the past
For dryers make work less.
Now what goes on inside a home
Is anybody's guess
I really miss that way of life.
It was a friendly sign
When neighbors knew each other best
By what hung on the line!
(June Masters Bacher)
My arms reach out through time and space
And hold each memory in place:
A creaking swing, a whispered word,
A promise only night winds heard . . .
A little footstep on the stair,
A small fragmented baby prayer.
My arms reach out through time and space
And do not find an empty place.
(Recorded in the early 70's by Mary Hopkins)
Those were the days my friend
We thought they'd never end
We'd sing and dance forever and a day
We'd live the life we choose
We'd fight and never lose
For we were young and sure to have our way.
Those were the days,
oh yes, those were the days.