For Sale_ This Old House

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Re: For Sale_ This Old House

Postby Van Canna » Sat Dec 08, 2018 5:57 am

You came to visit us last night in my dreams...I had prayed to God to send you back to us...and not to worry...since though you no longer have your own house and a mate...you still have your father's house...your very own beautiful room, preserved and unchanged...all you will ever need is here for you my son...

In the dream you were telling me you were setting up a small place for yourself to retire to...but that before you went you would do something for us and enlarge the den area so we could be more comfortable...

I know you will be home at Christmas eve to visit...I shall be waiting...

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Re: For Sale_ This Old House

Postby Van Canna » Tue Dec 18, 2018 11:44 am

A window, fogged by the whispered breath of a winter's day, gives birth to a drop of water. Weeping slowly down the glass, I trace its trail with my finger, and in its wake I journey.

A picture sharpens from memory and a voice so sweet, echoes from the past. Red and yellow, the tears of autumn, carpet the ground.

A little boy, in Sunday-suit, laughs and giggles in innocent glee amidst a shower of swirling color.

A child's song plays from everywhere in the translucent background of orange clouds and weeping willows.

"Love you Daddy…" His words fade as he hands me a maple-leaf flower burning in monarch-yellow.
His words have faded, but I can still see them pass his smiling mouth – " I love you." His world blurs as the memories exact their toll and vanish as mist into the past.


I travel this journey often, this journey of sadness and pain. Crimson tips mark the paths that cross the sea of thorns, a path of sorrow that I would cross in endless repetition to bask in the sun of Indian Summer.

For at journeys end is the priceless smile of a child, my child, waiting to hand me a leaf of butterfly yellow, and to tell me once more that he loves me.

They say sadness will drain life from your soul, but for me sadness is a journey to bliss. If I listen close, I can hear his laughter in the trailing wake of a winter's tear.

:cry:
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Re: For Sale_ This Old House

Postby Van Canna » Tue Dec 18, 2018 11:47 am

You, blossom of my own
shaken and parched tree,

you, of my vain life
ultimate and only flower,


lay in the chilly ground,

lay in the black ground;


neither can the sun gladden you

nor love awaken you again.
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Re: For Sale_ This Old House

Postby Van Canna » Tue Dec 18, 2018 11:50 am

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Re: For Sale_ This Old House

Postby Van Canna » Tue Dec 25, 2018 7:00 am

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Re: For Sale_ This Old House

Postby Van Canna » Tue Jan 22, 2019 12:27 am

The night train had once again deposited me at the end of the line ...the old railway station from where I could see my old house still standing.

It was great dusk and the more I walked and the closer I was getting to the corner of the street where a right turn would place me directly facing my old house_ the more I was becoming aware of my steps being those of a reclusive man in a solitary place.

The sound of my shoe’ soles on the asphalt was distressing_ in that moment I fully understood what it meant to be totally alone.

A growing sense of deep abandonment …all pervasive.

This trip, this city, this old family house, all was part of a realm_ in which I was now entering_
a concave sphere of glass, in whose reflections were rotating distorted views of life’s past felicitous stories that had deserted me.

All the friends round town during my young years had disappeared, there were no familiar people and not even one person with whom I could make small talk anywhere in sight.

Memories:

The evening walks on the glittering promenade by the sea, our crew of four as we raced just offshore, on the way back to our rowing club_ floating the sparkle of happiness_

the midnight parties, the nights overlooking the stars from the club’s deck. .. a young brunette girl at the piano touching off the song ‘Casablanca’ while waiting for her ‘rower’ to dock ashore.

But now… of all that, only a distant reflection of so many golden remembrances of things past.

And the sphere in which I was now drifting?
A halo of darkness surrounded all things and put out every color.

Turning the corner _my old house comes suddenly into view. But it seemed all different just as it looked the same.

No lights- only beckoning gloominess.

Looking up to the third floor balcony of the building across my old house, I thought I heard the voice of my childhood friend John_ shouting at me in joy “About time you decided to come back” But he was nowhere to be seen…the façade somber in its shadowiness.

The solitude… a beautiful enchanting city that was now the scenography to an empty stage, paving the way to a returning solitary son.

In trepidation I climb the stairs from the great portal to the front door…it opens with a whisper, I enter in anticipation of stepping into the long dark corridor that used to terrify me as a child at night in its blackness.

It was the corridor flanking all the major rooms of the house but sectioned off with doors like a labyrinth, dark at night but sunny and bright in the day with huge windows on the far side overlooking our garden and the beloved railway station.

The fear of the hallway’s night tenebrosity was being fueled as a child by the presence of a terrifying painting on the walls my father had hung there…
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It was a painting of Theseus gone into the labyrinth to slay the minotaur.

Minos and theseus

Since ancient Greek myths are passed down through oral tradition, many variations of this and other myths exist. According to an Athenian version of the legend, Minos attacked Athens after his son was killed there.

The Athenians asked for terms, and were required to sacrifice seven young men and seven maidens to the Minotaur every seven or nine years.
One year, the sacrificial party included Theseus, the son of King Aegeus, who volunteered to come and kill the Minotaur.

Ariadne fell in love at first sight, and helped him by giving him a sword and a ball of thread (μίτο της Αριάδνης 'Ariadne's thread'), so that he could find his way out of the Minotaur's labyrinth.


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There were some nights when as a child I needed to cross that corridor[the labyrinth of my mind] I swore I could hear the deep grunt of something hidden in the darkness.

Ha...The great living room to the left of the entrance door... a room with a red waxed floor, French furniture upon a red oriental rug... …the beautiful rearing ceramic horse perched on the marble pedestal reflecting in the gold rigged mirror at the rear corner of the room.

It was ...My mother’s favorite room where so many visitors had been entertained…the glass liquor cabinet with bottles of Strega and Vermouth and gold gilded glasses and trays. My secret little room off to one side, its door always locked.

But upon entering I felt the darkness enveloping as a second skin. I looked for the light switch trusting in my hand caressing the wall near the entrance door…I flipped it on but the darkness remained.
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Re: For Sale_ This Old House

Postby Van Canna » Tue Jan 22, 2019 12:36 am

Looking to the adjacent bedroom of my parents, I saw its door opening and a faint light on inside, giving the illusion I could enter, but I could not, my feet seemed glued in place...I had come close to dying as a child in that room afflicted by an infection before the time of antibiotics. But I had survived in the midst of many nightmares.

I did a mental account of all the rooms…the radio room, off the long corridor …my bedroom…the lovely veranda, just outside my bedroom door, overlooking my beautiful garden and the railway station just beyond, the trains coming and going connecting to infinite lines.

My large playroom and toy room, the long dark pantry with mezzanine full of mysteries, my father’ library room, somber but inviting, the long conference table where guests sat to play canasta and look out of the balcony overlooking the sea.

The bedrooms of my brother and sister, the huge storage room, the great dining room and large kitchen with mezzanine, its back window overlooking railroad tracks…from where you watch trains climbing a hill...

I needed to be in my parents’ bedroom, to check out its elegance and comfort of yore_ I tried again to get in, this time I thought I heard my mother's lovely voice calling me...

with quick steps I approached the drawn windows blinds which I drew up looking for a last ray of light…in the barely adequate street light reflection, I looked for her...nothing but shadows populating the walls.

I searched for more particulars the memories of this much loved old house…but something wasn’t just right.

Even observing and again going over every detail, missing was that fragment that would complete the picture. The house was devoid of any soul, no one there at all, no communication, no voices, no noise…a cold chill assailing my bones, no photos of my parents on the wall, not a one sweet whisper or song by the beautiful voice of my mother...she was such a good singer, the life of any party.

My family was no longer there, no ghosts of a glorious past, all that was left nothing but a bunch of old furniture hiding under dust covers trying to tell old stories.

My father’ house seemed always full with housekeepers, brothers, sisters, grandparents, and a coming and going of good friends, it was rare that a day went by when I could prouce an echo between empty rooms. And when such a day would come, I was quick to call out and fill the house with my many friends bringing the noise of life in.

And now with what would I do...I felt so alone.
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Re: For Sale_ This Old House

Postby Van Canna » Thu Jan 24, 2019 12:55 am

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There _ In front of me ~~~~ my mother...momentarily appearing as beautiful as I ever remember …..But only for a moment.

I often go visit her grave next to a peaceful brook under the shade of a large tree canopy. As I visit, I can hear the rush of time inverting to my childhood and reawakening memories of years past and forward. So much happiness, so much sorrow.

Later in life _ I had seen her in the hospital where I went into shock, after learning of the brutal diagnosis and in realizing she had recognized me only for an instant before slipping back into the grasp of a demonic disease.

And
I had run out of the room and ‘hidden’ in a corner of the corridor, sobbing out of control.

In my mind's eye I see the image of her smiling at me one lovely Christmas day. _ But she is changing before my eyes…

I had suspected something was astray_ a few months before that fiendish diagnosis, when she would appear muddled, bewildered and fearful of mundaneness.

But the final realization of something terribly wrong came _ when I did not receive a happy birthday card, a visit or telephone call from her.

Never had she forgotten_ would she forget such a loving _ memorable event of her life_ the first born.

The long vigils by her bedside and my final kiss upon her lips inhaling her last breath. :(
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Re: For Sale_ This Old House

Postby Van Canna » Thu Jan 24, 2019 1:09 am

But ‘Ma’ what’s happening’? I can barely utter.

_ ‘Don’t say anything dear son of mine’_ she replies with almost no air left in he lungs.

“Keep going; don’t stop my son_ I am the beginning and the bridge. The beginning of your life and the bridge to eternity”

I look at my mother unable to understand what she is saying to me, while observing the dissolution of her life, helpless, and unable to even speak a word.

She collapses in a sitting position, labors for breath several times, turns to me and waves me away with a slight gesture of the hand.

But she had been so alone the last years of her life. After her passing, I would spend hours under her balcony looking up at the spot where she sat on a rocking chair awaiting destiny.Why was I in denial of so much when she was still alive and in need of companionship?

I begin to sob loudly in a flood of tears.

The first consciousness of mother was when as a small child , she would sing me a melodious lullaby _ ‘ninna-nanna bel bambino’ _ caressing me sweetly. She had such a great voice _ she could have sung professionally.

I reflect upon so many good memories. But you also have some bad ones _

Mother and father loved each other and always kissed one another.
Then one day I heard a commotion, saw mother’s tears and heard her plead with my father to stop yelling.

I was terrorized and had run away plugging my ears. The next morning it had been mother to wake me up smiling as always.

What happiness. It had only been a bad dream.

As time went by _ I had seen mother with a desperate look on her face. I had asked ‘what’s wrong Ma’?
She had locked herself in the bathroom. But when she came out she was as beautiful as ever with her radiant smile.

I had hugged her and told her ‘I love you so much, Ma’ _ You had seen a furtive tear drop at the corner of her loving eyes.

‘Your father has left for work out of town. He was to be away a short while, but he has been gone a very long time.’

And now I remember he never even said goodbye to me. Strange, I don’t miss him _ but you do miss them together.

My mother was always sad, and often, I would see her staring out the bedroom window with misty, eyes.

I think maybe it was my fault for what had happened between them_ my bad dream must have changed something_ I no longer know what is the dream and what is the reality.
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Re: For Sale_ This Old House

Postby Van Canna » Thu Jan 24, 2019 1:13 am

I had always loved trains. My ancestors were extremely wealthy, they had owned about half of the city's real estate, including the vast land behind the huge family house, which was taken over by the State to build a railway and train station as a gate to the North.


The railway was adjacent to the house garden. In the day I would scale the dividing wall and hide in dormant freight trains with friends. Freight cars were closest to my House garden_ on 'storage' rails _ passenger trains were across the way in the station.

At night I would stare out the rear balcony at the commuter trains, arriving and departing from the station I loved so much to visit.

I would listen enraptured, to the 'huffing' of the steam locomotives and the trains' mournful whistles, as I imagined taking trips to distant cities, new adventures awaiting_ with a Viennese waltz in my head sweetly embracing my fantasies.

And I dreamt ...dreamt ..and dreamt...

Is this one of those dreams?
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Re: For Sale_ This Old House

Postby Van Canna » Thu Jan 24, 2019 5:31 pm

LIFE _ you ponder_

To live is to battle with family, strangers and friends in the vaults of heart and mind.

Why do I feel isolated in darkness, solitude, and silence in the house of my ancestors last owned by my father. This old house I have loved so much since I became conscious of it as a little boy...and its known and unknown mysteries holding me captive in a golden suspension of time.

Silence, sadness and loneliness ordained to be my constant companions for life...what unseen forces were at work in that sacred space once a paradise of happiness?

Ha_ it must be this internal dialogue, all enveloping, that insulates my being holding me hostage between doubt and reflection.

I have had so many dearest friends_ so many lives touched by the unforgiving hand of destiny.

P… lost his wife to a brain tumor several years ago and now suffers in silence. After a long time he had wanted to talk to you about it, and I listened_ what else could I have done?

At times there is nobody to talk with, and the sorrow turns to desperation, a mourning that cannot be left behind.

The desperation of having lost my son will only deepen as time marches on.

I had shamefully run in denial from my family’s suffering so many times_ it scares me so terribly_ it submerges me_ there is no place for me to hide.

But why do I like to write so much?

To write: that is to sit in judgment over one’s self.
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Re: For Sale_ This Old House

Postby Van Canna » Thu Jan 24, 2019 5:48 pm

The mind needs distractions to avoid the desperation and agony of solitude. Yet along the way I have discovered that solitude creates the unique state of mind that allows ‘penetration’ into the soul of life.

There is also a growing fear, palpable, I am in the grip of cold shivers.

Is there really someone/something I hear knocking on the front entrance door or is that another of my many false alarms over the course of my life? Or is it just 'old age' knocking?

So many times I had come close to death... As a child, I survived the allied bombings on the town _ and then that nasty fall from a tree in my garden while playing Tarzan_

that feverish typhoid infection that brought me close to death for lack of antibiotics _

the 12 gauge shotgun going off _

the multiple armed assailant’s attack_
the fall from my motorcycle that launched me on my stomach towards the wheels of an oncoming bus_

the time the headlights of my scooter failed causing me to miraculously come to a stop inches from a precipice_

and when my company car spun out of control and came to rest facing the opposite direction on the highway and a tractor trailer flashed inches by - horns blaring_

the 30-06 round whizzing by my left ear in advanced infantry maneuvers.

_ the time I was trapped in a skyscraper by fire and smoke, while looking for a job, barely making it out to safety_

The rebellious violence of my years_

In a cold sweat you shake off more memories of close encounters with the grim reaper_
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Re: For Sale_ This Old House

Postby Van Canna » Thu Jan 24, 2019 5:55 pm

So many questions in my tormented heart. Mind emptiness is so hard to achieve.

At times an entire life passes in search of something…..and while searching that ‘something’ you find another _ that it is not really what you were looking for.

So you continue to look for what you were originally after_

_ And in the end if you find what you were hoping to find __

It could happen that what you were searching for _ with so much ‘ardor’ and found it _ can take away what you had found while looking for what you were originally after.

I know_ I am confused_ this reflects life. :(
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Re: For Sale_ This Old House

Postby Van Canna » Thu Jan 24, 2019 6:02 pm

There have been days in my life when I have sat alone in deep reverie_ shutting the door of that silent chamber, the world and its undeserved blame or praise. The voice within_

There were times I embraced reluctantly the picture of my real self being reflected upon the vivid background of my years...why had I been chosen to have to suffer the misery, despondency, despair, desolation, dolefulness, melancholy, low spirits, mournfulness, woe, broken-heartedness, heartache, grief and isolation being showered upon me by the death of my beloved son?
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Re: For Sale_ This Old House

Postby Van Canna » Thu Jan 24, 2019 6:04 pm

I recline your head retreating into introspection.

Did I ever understand that dreams could possibly be the pathway to hope?
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