It's been over a week since I arrived at my mother's house in Maryville, Tennessee. I've spent a lot of time just staying at the house, sometimes reflecting on memories while at others just basking in the aura of this place that's been in our family for nearly 50 years. And now we're trying to sell this place.
Since I've been here we've spent most of our evenings just sitting on the deck that overlooks the expansive back yard. With the approach of evening comes a hypnotic chorus of cicadas soon joined by a myriad of crickets and other critters whose names I don't know. The insect soundtrack provides a steady background for our discussions of stories dredged from the past and the uncertain plans for the future.
Getting rid of this house is the main thing on all of our minds while being the topic we hope might disappear as it becomes resolved in the simplest manner. I'd be happy if the house just stayed with the family and we could have summer evenings like these recent ones from now until...
Then again, maybe we need to let go of this past. Leave it to our memories.
My time here is running out. I need to leave this coming Thursday and I haven't gotten anywhere near what I had hoped to have done. I've got some boxes packed up to take with me but there are so many things to do here. Once I leave, I may not be coming back unless I absolutely have to.
I want to come back. This is part of the story of my past. This house is like part of my life museum. No one else knows all of the stories here. Not the stories I do. And I don't even know all of the stories. This is a house full of stories.
This week I will be leaving, but I will never truly be gone. Or should I say I will take pieces of this house in my heart. The crickets chirp into the the night as I drift into sleep. Those crickets. They know something. Perhaps they know everything.
I know nothing at all.