Cookies and Flowers

Updated: Dec 6, 2019

by Evelyn Kretzer '20

My mother looks out the foggy rain-dropped window with sorrow in her eyes, I can see from the other room, but when I approach her to attempt to comfort her she doesn’t let me see her puffy eyes, she gives a responsive giggle and wipes her hands on her apron and walks back to the kitchen, I scurry to the staircase near the kitchen where I can easily see into the kitchen and into our dining room, where I used to spend hours watching my parents, my mother would bake while my father set up his model trains in the dining room, my mother hated those trains, but my father was under the impression that she loved them because on their first date they went to see the movie The Polar Express and she said that she loved it, but it was not the movie she was referring to that she loved, so I sit on the ledge of the balcony of the stairs and I watch my mother knead the dough of what appears to be in the process of becoming snickerdoodle cookies which were my dad’s favorites ever since he and I won the baking contest at the local holiday festival party, where my mom would go off and drink coffee and gossip with the other moms in the neighborhood and we would meet back up with her as the sun was setting and give her a taste of our prize-winning cookies, so I sit against the ledge of the balcony and my eyes trace around my mom and I see a bouquet of flowers, lilies, my dad’s favorite because when my dad first met my mom he thought she said her name was Lilly, when really she said Lizzie and I lean back on the staircase and realize what day it is and I think to myself how could I forget? but I’m also relieved that I’ve been able to move forward, unlike my mom who prepares my dad’s favorites of everything, she turns to the staircase as she knows I am watching her, “are you coming with me this time?” her shaky voice says through a forced smile, “yeah,” I manage to say choking back tears, not for my father, but for my mother, we drive a drive I’m way too familiar with and sooner than expected, I get a glimpse of the tombstones, there’s dew on the grass and grey clouds and fog, it’s like out of a horror movie, but I walk out with my mom and we put lilies and freshly baked snickerdoodles on the unlabeled tomb we chose many years ago and we walk away, nobody has said a word since we left the house, she starts the drive home and as I look back, squirrels have gotten into the cookies that we had left on some random tomb that my mom and I act like is my father’s because the real truth is too hard to accept.

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