A little while ago, I wrote a post called Research. It was as though I inspired myself with that post, as a few days afterwards I felt a compelling urge to leave my home and trace the footsteps of my past. I walked down by the river of my childhood, walking a path I had taken so many times before; yet, although I know it better than anything, I could not tell you the last time I went there. It seems so long ago…
I used to walk down by the river with my father every single Sunday, and we used to take the dog. It is now I think of a moment in chapter 11 of Times of Old: the character Elizabeth is spending her time doing something with her father – something they always used to do in the past…
‘It made her wonder why, and how, they stopped doing it.’
Indeed I wonder why my father and I stopped walking for a moment, but then I remember, and I feel my soul sigh poignantly. Our dog was old, and sadly he passed away. And, not long after that, my parents separated. My father and I no longer had the chance to have our weekly walks. And so that phase of my life washed away, and I watched the time we spent together drift slowly from me.
When I went for my walk down by the river the other day, I took my current dog. Besides that, I was alone. But as I walked by the river, gazing at the nature which seemed so unchanged, yet strangely new, the water whispered to me.
Down by the river that whispers memories to me, with every sound a sigh for days long gone by.
The past beckons me down the passage of trees, and I can hear our footsteps echo through the leaves.
Take me to the river and tell me of the times
when we would stand together and hear the river chime.
The cold water sighs but eases the heartache of the hollowness created when a memory awakes.
I hear the water whisper, saying, “It’s okay,
for no amount of time can take the love you shared away.”
There is a bridge that represents my heart, bridging the gap which keeps two halves apart.
And, though it hurts, I know it will never be the end,
for I can always wonder on: what waits around the river-bend?
And though our time will soon be done in this place we know,
wherever my dear memories lie is where I’ll call home.
With a smile I’ll recall all the time we spent there,
down by the river with our little Polar Bear
Down by the river that whispers memories to me, with every sound a sigh for days long gone by. But I will always smile as I say goodbye to the bygone times of home where the river chimes.