More Dreams?

Just because I’ve stopped commuting (at least temporarily) it doesn’t mean that I’ve stopped writing stories. It only means that I had to find another place to do the writing.

I am in the process of compiling my second collection, “More Dreams” and just to give you a small peek inside, take a look at this story…

Bottled Sunshine

by Irene P. Smith

As I enjoyed my morning coffee out on the back deck in the bright May sunshine, I surveyed my backyard.

“They’re here!” I called through the screen on the sliding door.

“Who is here?” asked my husband.

“Not a who, a what,” I replied as he joined me on the deck.

Golden dandelions dotted the bright green expanse. You may call them weeds, but I call them pure sunshine. Maybe because my grandmother loved them so.

Small things made Grandma happy. Everything from a little mechanical owl in a movie to a backyard in bloom. When her yard overflowed with yellow, she didn’t grumble, she rejoiced.

She and I picked dandelions every spring. We tossed the leaves into salads and we plucked the petals and fermented them in large crocks before pouring it into bottles. That was in the 1960s, more than half a century ago. Today, Grandma lives only in the memory of those who loved her. Sadly, she didn’t live long enough to meet my children.

“Dandelions are the perfect flower,” she used to tell me. “First you can admire them in the yard, then you can feed your family. And, after all that, you can warm yourself by the winter fire with a bit of dandelion wine to bring back all that sunshine.”

Picking up my phone, I called the kids and invited them to a dandelion party.

They came to the house on a bright Saturday morning and brought their kids along. We spent the entire day picking the lovely yellow blossoms, hands sticky with the sap that flows from the broken stems.

We washed the greens and plucked the petals to mix with oranges, lemons, and raisins in huge crocks.

Now, in early June, the grass is deep, velvety green with nary a flower in sight. In the cellar reside a dozen bottles of dandelion wine, a dozen bottles of sunshine, put up for the depths of winter when I will sit by the fire and raise my glass in a toast to Grandma.