Last night we stayed in Newport, Washington where my family lived from 1950-55. Since I was very young, my recollections of Newport are few and far between.
Our focus yesterday, Sunday was to visit Deer Lake Resort for a picnic and scatter ashes in a sacred place.
My Dad and Mom met in high school. Dad lived with his aunties during the school year and worked summers for room and board. That is how he came to have a hand in constructing the roof for the Lodge Grandpa Twitchell constructed at Mac’s Landing (now Deer Lake Resort).
Made of hewn logs and built into the embankment, the structure had stairways — one on either side. On the right side (lake side), they swept straight up from ground level to the living quarters. When relatives gathered we would sit upon those steps for reunion photographs. On the kitchen side, I still see Grandma standing at the railing, pouring coffee grounds from her large galvanized stove-top coffee pot into the worm bed below. People gone, stairs gone, photos lost — memories remain.
Of course the entire area has been transformed from the idyllic quiet meadows with deer grazing and fenced range-lands for cattle. Now it is built-up, full of RV’s, campers, families vacationing, fishing, kids swimming. How could it be otherwise after sixty-five years?
After a picnic, Creighton took Jello and we walked up the pathway beside the kitchen end and behind the Lodge. Here I scattered a small offering of the ashes of my Mom and Dad. They loved this place. It gave them strength — it was home, warmth, happiness for many years of their life.
My fingers touch what is left of two bodies
scatter small traces of MotherFather
over this place on earth and a breeze
gently lifts their essence into
the dry vapor of pines.