Twin Lupines and Twin Thoughts

Recently in the very wild weedy gardens, a Lupine had twins. Of course I photographed them. They began as one bloom and then something happened probably during the bud development, and two flower stalks formed where one is the norm. I used to know all the technical terms, after reading for some time, and just short of getting out some of my old textbooks I gave up and said "So what..forget the why, and enjoy the darn flower." Lupin or Lupine (North American) ..both spellings are correct.

Twins were on my mind this morning, and I really didn’t know why, until I looked at the calendar. Jen made me a special calendar this year, I like to keep track of birthdays, and anniversaries, so she made me a calendar that has photographs of special people and their special days. Two little very different faces occupy this day on my calendar. Five year old today faces, of my great nephews, fraternal twins, both look very different, both are unique individuals. The party is on Sunday!

I have an Uncle and Aunt that are twins, my Grandmother gave birth to them two months after I was born, they are as different as night and day. I have twin cousins, they are not identical, but close enough that most people cannot tell them apart. Most people tell them apart by their wives, one married a blond, one a brunette. Far Guy’s parents had twins, a boy and a girl back in 1942, they were born and died on the same day. It was very sad, and was not something they talked about very much. They lived in Omaha at the time, so not many relatives can even fill in the blanks. Our daughter Trica finally wrote and got their birth and death certificates.. we always wondered where the twins were buried. We still don’t know, as the hospital took care of all the details. I guess years ago, they just did mass burials of babies that were born too soon. Far Guy’s Dad got to see them, and he told me once that he held one of them, Far Guy’s Mom was not awake, this was back when most Mother’s were rendered unconscious for the birth of their children in hospitals. Philip Leroy lived for 2 hours, Elizabeth Ann for 6 hours and 13 minutes. Not nearly long enough, their dashes were short. Their dashes were hardly recognized, they were not listed when Far Guys Dad died, but the hand written obituary that Far Guy’s Mom left behind included them.

Abra a blogging friend, came up with the "dashes" she once wrote that it is what you do with your dash that is important, not the dates at the beginning or the end:)

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3 Responses to Twin Lupines and Twin Thoughts

  1. buffalogal says:

    You are truly “Miss Rumphius”. If you have never seen that childrens’ picture book—-I gotta get a copy to you! It is wonderful and lupines are the focus of the book, mostly. Miss Rumphius was a most interesting book character…a truly memorable one and I love her so much because she worked in a library!!!!
    interesting family information about the twins nobody could talk about. My Mother and my Aunt (the one who is going to Eventide today) were both twins but their twins die not live…one stilborn and one who lived for a few hours or a day. The gravestone for one says “Edith” the other one just says “Baby”..I assume “Baby” is the stillborn. It happened a lot back then–the early loss of babies and many stillbirths.

  2. abra la mente says:

    I would love to take credit for coming up with “the dash,” concept, and although I pass the idea on and often ponder if there is substance in my dash, I can’t take credit for the idea. Here is the whole poem:

    The Dash
    by Linda Ellis

    I read of a man who stood to speak
    At the funeral of a friend.
    He referred to the dates on her tombstone
    From the beginning to the end.

    He noted that first came the date of her birth
    And spoke of the following date with tears,
    But he said what mattered most of all
    Was the dash between those years.

    For that dash represents all the time
    That she spent alive on earth
    And now only those who loved her
    Know what that little line is worth.

    For it matters not, how much we own,
    The cars, the house, the cash,
    What matters is how we live and love
    And how we spend our dash.

    So think about this long and hard;
    Are there things you’d like to change?
    For you never know how much time is left
    That can still be rearranged.

    If we could just slow down enough
    To consider what’s true and real
    And always try to understand
    The way other people feel.

    And be less quick to anger
    And show appreciation more
    And love the people in our lives
    Like we’ve never loved before.

    If we treat each other with respect
    And more often wear a smile,
    Remembering that this special dash
    Might only last a little while.

    So when your eulogy is being read
    With your life’s actions to rehash
    Would you be proud of the things they say
    About how you spent your dash?

    © 1996 Linda Ellis

  3. Far Side of Fifty says:

    Thanks Abra for the poem, I searched your archives this morning..for exactly what you said..I finally gave up. I just recall it and associate it with you! Probably because of your interest in family history and graveyards. Thanks for the entire poem, you are a doll! :)

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