Tuesday, November 14, 2017

Faith Gave Me the Sky

No, I'm not going to write about my faith in this or that. I'm going to write about my aunt, Faith Lucille Kemper.

An old maid, Faith lived in a spacious two-story house in Alma, Nebraska, where she'd been born. Her small-town world limited her life. She never married, because most eligible Alma men were dead, thanks to World War I. Instead, she went to business school, then worked in the Post Office.

I loved to visit Faith, she was so congenial. I'd stop to watch the wild cats scarf down food and water on her back porch. If I stepped into her house and the radio featured Paul Harvey, I had the good sense to sit down and listen to him tell us "the rest of the story."

One day when I had grown and visited Faith, she looked up at me as I came indoors: "How's the sky?"

"The sky?" I stared at her. "I don't know. I didn't look at the sky."

Faith squealed. "You didn't look at the sky?" Her hand flew to her chest. "Why I always look at the sky when I'm outdoors."

I believed her. She kept track of the weather like some folks watch pennies.

Strangely, after that visit, my last one, the sky seemed irresistible. I seldom stepped outdoors without ogling it to see if clouds had rolled in, or not. As its fierce beauty unfolded for me, I heard myself say, "Thanks, Faith, for giving me the sky."

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