Friday, January 31, 2020

Wisteria Midcentury Hanging Art Modern Mobile | Mark Leary Designs

Mobile: Wisteria (44” wide x 21” tall)

On blooming
“It’ll open,” said fox, “when the time is right.”

Thoughts while making
“When you get right down to it,” my Gramma wrote, “I’m not very grandmotherly. After all, I smoke and do sinful things. I also gamble and like it.”

For as long as I can remember, my Gramma and Tim – her third husband who lovingly called her his Little Red Hen – would sit on our back deck and smoke. Christmas dinner, Easter brunch, birthdays, and everydays, they’d step out of the family gathering, taking a few moments on their own, smoke curling up from their long cigarettes.

“I truly wish I was like your mother, who can see good in everything,” she once wrote, “even those big pants the teenagers wear. All I can see that they do is make them fall off their skateboards. Perhaps, I just go to the Taco Bell too often. They hang out there and fall off their skateboards and bikes all the time. Mostly, though they are nice to old ladies with canes.”

In the winter, Gramma and Tim would bundle up in their thick jackets and retreat to the deck for their after dinner smoke. As a kid, I remember stealing glances at them through the sliding glass door. They were mostly quiet, sharing space yet not talking, a waft of smoky air following them back in as they wrestled with the heavy sliding door.

“I do not react well to gloom,” she wrote at another time. “It seems to creep into my mind and body and messes up my usual cheery disposition. I try not to let it show because your Mom and Grandpa get upset. Since they banned smoking in the Taco Bell, life is really dreary. When I started smoking it wasn’t a terrible thing, but it surely is now.”

In the summer, wisteria grew thick and full on the pergola over the back deck. The sunlight filtered through tangled woody stems with their candy green leaves, casting these shifting shadows of light and question.

As I was making this mobile – of laurel harvested from my backyard – I was thinking about how much my grandparents loved each other, how lucky I was that we wrote to each for many years, and memories of those clusters of purple wisteria flowers blanketing the deck as they sat quietly together.

What's your favorite flower? 

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