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Sunday, July 27, 2014

Wash day in the gypsy camp...

It was wash day among the woman in the gypsy camp… once a month they all gathered under the giant willow—old and young as well. Their baskets slung upon their heads, the younger ones carrying theirs in the hollow of their arms, bobbing against their young hips… 

They parted from the giant willow clad in their colorful dresses and jewelry.  In their baskets—clothes, old towels and handkerchief linens… garments the colors of nature softened with rain and mist… all to be washed in the tepid waters of Rio Alegre. 

They were gypsies… have been for centuries. Grandmothers, mothers, daughters, sisters and friends walking together the way a vine grows over a gate through generations… and as they walk towards the river, they chat about everything under the pale blue sky… all of them lovely and natural as morning dew, regardless look or age. Because beauty is not a thing of the outside… 


As they walk, and talk, and laugh, the little gypsy girl stops in her path… her big brown eyes searching for unseen signs in the sky above their heads… it will rain—she whispers. You see, although nothing can really foretell what’s about to happen, or that the sun soon will shrink under menacing clouds and heat will turn into rain, she knows it. She possess it… the capacity to see. To imagine and so to recognize the hidden story, the hidden life that speaks in charms and whispers and will not show its face, save halfly… 

She hurries through the path of wild flowers down the river… the others follow. Trees above them lean low and heavy across the path… witches’ broom hang from their heavy boughs-like strings of lace floating from trees, which seem to dance under the sun…


She trod on the damp grass... the trees shifting, cracking in the light breeze…
and down at the river they wash...


Rainbow veils and shrouds and mantles and shawls and winding sheets later let dried by summer breezes….




Colorful garments drying in the sunshine, dancing in the wind. 


All lively and colorful... all lovely


Some the sunset colors, some bright and others muted, the luster of silk and apricot glow of the setting sun through the shadows of the forest behind…


 And once they're dry, she knows how they will smell of sunflowers and Queen Ann's Lace and they will feel warm and fabulous from being outside all day.  But they must hurry if they don't wish muddy rain to soil the washed.


 The little gypsy knows it...



There is a golden glow all round that is more nostalgic than sad...
a glow that finds the beauty in shadows and turns it into rain...
They must hurry!


And she was so right! You see, as the little gypsy girl hurried to collect her pretty veils, from the clothesline the sky had so darkened around them that suddenly they were cast deep into shadows…


They all made it back to their gypsy camp safely just in time before the first crash of thunder split opened the heavens bringing a heave of rain…  just as the little gypsy girl had prognosticated..


Back to the pleasant warmth of their cozy gypsy tents, now embellished by freshly washed garments with the scent of sunshine… 



That night they all gathered by the warmth of their gypsy campfire.  To tell stories of their lineage of centuries back, to laugh and dance in spite of their worries, in spite of their fears and sorrows, and heartaches… because they knew well how beautiful life is and how it needed be lived each day to its fullest…



1 comment:

  1. Oh the gypsy girls and the beautiful fabrics drying on the branches, floating in the breeze. You know how to weave a word picture and I like the nest of pillows and lacy hangings you created.

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