Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Election Day morning

Chicago was unusually warm and clear. Here in the Southland, we awoke to grey, chilly, wet weather. One of the trees in the yard to the side of my house, at the border of my neighbor's yard, is tipped in golden yellow, the leaves closest to the trunk still green. The leaves and branches are moving: there is also wind today. The fig tree outside the window of my study is nearly bare.

I am still tired from the conference and the trip, but it was good to be in my own bed last night.

Today in the cool weather I will wear a wool sweater knit for my father when he was a Marine in World War II, probably when he returned from the Marshall Islands with a wound in his foot and was in hospital in Hawaii. My father is taller and bigger than I but the sweater has shrunk from washings over the years and just fits me. The wool is tight and warm, a very dark navy blue with a small turtleneck. There is still a bit of the Red Cross label on the neck. A woman whose name we will never know knit this sweater, and perhaps others, for men she would never meet. My father recovered well and has, if I remember correctly, a 10% disability. His automobile license plate has a purple heart on it. He is proud of his service in the war. He has also been, for years, a supporter of peace, speaking out against our current wars in the local high school and giving the young 'uns his "war is hell" speech. In a memoir he wrote nearly two decades ago, he writes that you never forget the smell of death.

Father of Acts of Hope turns 90 this coming weekend, and Godde willing, I will be up in Boston with him and Mother of Acts of Hope, celebrating quietly. Today my parents are voting. My brother is watching the election from overseas. In less than an hour I will go to my neighborhood Get Out the Vote gathering, at 9 a.m. in someone's home, under the leadership of a young Obama-Biden campaign staffer, wearing my father's sweater, knit by a Red Cross volunteer whose name we will never know.

Election Day.

Brought to you by your daily ¡Sí, se puede!

Activated till the polls close on November 4.


Fran said...

¡Sí, se puede!

What a lovely post- I love the imagery of the sweater.

I voted and now we will wait, hope, pray.

Doorman-Priest said...

Fingers (and other extemities) crossed!

June Butler said...

Please wish father of Acts of Hope a Happy 90th Birthday for me, and you all have a lovely weekend.