Looking back

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Simpler was not easier,
those times that have gone by,
we pick and choose the memories -
separating the pains and toils away like chaff from wheat.
The sicknesses that stole away so many in their prime,
the freezing cold or blistering hot stink of a trip to the outhouse,
the numbing pumping to get the water,
the hand washing, hanging to dry and then the folding.
The rattling and hissing of steam in old radiators melting crayons into waxy rainbows.
The windows open wide, curtains fluttering, during summer thunderstorms - cooling the house.
Cooking from scratch was not a concept or a fun alternative, it was the daily chore to keep us fed.
We did not have a lot. And what we had we took care of and if we did it well enough, it got handed down to someone else.
Life was harsh. 
And rich. 
People went to bed thankful and slept easily, exhausted from the day.

And memories trick us easily, letting us see the vignettes
of innocence amidst the dirt and heat, or cold and meager.
We remember the small joys as if they were bright and shining,
an oasis in the desert.
But simpler was not easier.
And today's joys will be just as bright as we look back.
Photo by Norbert Kundrak on Pexels.com
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