What I remember the desk on the farm looked like.
Saturday my husband took me shopping for something I have wanted since I was a little girl…my own writing desk. I have always known exactly what type of desk. A drop front oak desk with cubby holes and little drawers. It will be delivered tomorrow.
My first few years of life were spent in the big farm house that eventually became my Uncle Mrywin’s home. My family moved out about the time I finished second grade. Since, Uncle Myrwin’s death last month, I have thought a lot about that place. Throughout all of these years, I have kept a secret. That farm has always been the home place of my heart.
I have never been a rich woman, nor will I ever be one. Being totally disabled from my cancer fight and broken back, I can’t even work to earn the money I would need to purchase that farm, should that ever become an option. I have always known that, that little piece of this earth, with all of its memories and family lore, will never belong to me.
It’s a sad cruelty of life when you desperately love something or someone that you can never have. I am not the first, nor will I be the last that has suffered from coveting. I have spent my whole life it seems memorizing each building, smell, color, sound, animal, activity, person and visit to that farm. The Bible teaches that where your heart is, there will your treasure be also. My family comes first, but that farm is a close second. Yes, I have stored away a treasure trove of memories of Uncle Mrywin’s farm.
One of my earliest memories is of an old oak desk. I seem to recall that it fit in a space in the grand front entry hall under the open stairway. A very tiny sick little girl’s stature and soul could grow enormously when sitting at that desk. When I sat at that desk, I was someone and everyone. I was a writer.
My stories were as childish as my age at the time, but that did not matter a bit. There, alone, in that dimly lit hallway at that old desk, I became all the things I longed to be: healthy, smart, beautiful, brave, daring and adventurous. I can still remember pretending to be a queen writing declarations to be read to my adoring subjects. A rooster’s tail feather found in the farmyard became a quill pen that transformed me into a wise and highly regarded stateswoman who signed the great documents of our nation right along side the founding fathers, fancy scribbles and all. Times being what they were, much of my writing was economic. I only could use the invisible ink of the mind.
I don’t even know if the old desk in Uncle Myrwin’s house still exists and that really doesn’t matter. It was never meant to be mine anymore than farm. What did and does matter is that I have always known who also greatly loved that farm…Uncle Myrwin. It was our mutual love for the farm and my love for my Uncle that I shared in all of my weekly letters to him while he was in assisted living these past five years. All those years of storing up farm memories finally had purpose and it brought me great joy to share them with my uncle.
I am so looking forward to getting my desk tomorrow and can hardly wait to again sit in front of cubby holes and little drawers. Of course, I won’t have any of those handy dandy little half-pencils with the silver end that we used to get from seed corn salesmen to put in the drawers. Nor does it have curved glass or is as fancy as the one on the farm. I bet I will find a way, as my grandmother always said, “To make do.” Nonetheless, I will thank a loving and gracious God for my many, many blessings and all of the farm memories that I was able to share with my uncle, and then, I will write…..just saying.