William Michaelian

Poems, Notes, and Drawings

Between Memories

It would be wrong to characterize my childhood as anything but enchanted. To do so may seem like a combination of denial and choice, but my memory of those days is clear enough that I still feel it’s true. And while I don’t remember what happened between each individual memory, I clearly recall the daily rhythm and atmosphere, my awareness of the passing seasons, flowers blooming around the house, the shade of the ash and walnut trees, the garden growing, the orange trees behind the house, the vineyard beyond, and listening to the hot summer nights through my open bedroom window, all enjoyed within a feeling of freedom, safety, and security that required no examination or special appreciation, for the simple reason that I hadn’t been exposed to anything else. I had two older brothers and two loving parents; there were frequent visits made by friends and relatives; at our lunch and supper table, we often had welcome, unexpected guests. Admonishments and tears, whatever their cause, were short-lived. The general mood was positive. Humor prevailed. I was never afraid to get up in the morning, always eager and glad. I couldn’t wait to see it all again, to be in it and part of it. I was a witness whose innocent observations were welcome and never brushed aside. This sense of enchantment is likely the reason I’ve never felt a need to seek heaven or paradise. No trial, no tribulation, no difficulty self-inflicted, incidental, or great, has been enough to dispel it. If I’ve sought anything, it’s a deeper understanding of myself — which, I can’t help thinking, is only a return to the natural wisdom I arrived with when I was born into this world.


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