I saw a sticker on a car coming home from work this afternoon.
One of those "international ovals" that used to indicate a foreign country
like France, Switzerland or, if you believe the TV commercials,
Now they stand for everything from the local swim team
to the driver's favorite species of dog
although pinning it on the driver might be unfair
probably better to say the owner.
The sticker I saw today, and it was a sticker not a magnet,
it was stuck on the window,
was OLF and it made me miss mom more than yesterday,
Mother's Day, did.
OLF stands for Our Lady of Fatima, the local Catholic Church
and it was adorning an SUV of appropriate size and sticker price for these parts.
Mom always called Fatima, Saint Olaf's because everyone around here calls it OLF
so it wasn't her fault.
Every time I, or my wife, politely corrected her she'd reply,
"I know" and then promptly call it Olaf's ten minutes later.
So today waiting for the green light on the way home
a little sadness as St. Olaf's SUV reminded me of mom.
An old green motel chair
sits on a flagstone porch
overlooking a lake
and a gap in the mountains
the center of which frames
The chair has outlived
of my family
who are drawn here
to this spot
in West Virginia
where a mountain is reflected,
mirrored in fact,
in the lake
created by my great-grandfather
for that very purpose.