40 Lovely Things I Would Miss

If the World Ended Today

The Author at Thorncrown Chapel, Arkansas — Photo by Andrew Shaw

If I could spend the end with orphaned, broken books
I’d give them all a home. 
I love Recycled Books in Denton, Texas.

The warm embrace at the end of the laundry cycle, 
Like old friends gone away and returned.
I love clothes tumbled and toasty from the dryer.

Those messy feathered visitors singing,
I love the bird feeder on my balcony.

Rich sweet sin, I could devour the world
If terra firma were chocolate cake from 
Ravelin Bakery.

Patient toads in flashlight circles, 
Television light through open blinds,
Fireflies flirting while we hold hands,
I love long walks after dark.

Rocket Man on the car stereo,
Soars in notes so loud 
I hear music in my bones.

I could not survive a dark dystopia
without Cherries Pecans & Cream ice cream 
from
Braums.

Dreary December lit up in red and green,
Animated Santa and Snow Globe Snoopy on the lawns,
Joy and hope broadcast in twinkling lights. 
I love Christmas decorations.

Soft sheets. Thread count matters.
Pillows propped and fluffed, ready for dreams
Or reading in bed.

The hiss of mist, the cool droplets
Of water on my legs,
Wet tires leaving tracks on concrete,
I love riding my bike through sprinklers
On hot summer nights.

Never anchovy, sometimes soppressata,
Always mozzarella melted, stretching
From a wood-fired oven.
I love pizza from Cane Rosso.

Love and Sunshine smells exactly like a summer day.
Honeysuckle vines twined green around hedgerows.
My favorite scent from Bath and Body Works.

Adventure, travel, recipes with 28 ingredients,
The $1200 dress perfect for the farmer’s market,
Choose your diet, improve the cabinets in your log cabin,
And those perfume scented pages.
Real paper magazines in the mail.

The Cheese aisle in Central Market.
Tour the world with dairy.

Steamy showers.
Yes, I used up all the hot water.

Binge watching television shows,
Thank God there are 
Imaginary people with bigger problems than mine,
Solved in one season.

Roses in gardens
Velvet petals wilted after a rain,
And fresh flowers from Trader Joe’s.

Sizzle, crackle, sputter, grease splatter
Crisp dangerous bacon fried.

Movie theaters with reclining seats. 
Popcorn in buckets big enough 
To last through the trailers of coming attractions.

Thrift shops, antique stores, flea markets,
Cast off collections and treasures parted only
Upon death or moving on to a better place.

Yarn, paints, pencils, the promise of a new hobby. 
I love craft stores.

My cakes would disappoint Mary Berry but 
I love The Great British Baking Show.

New Years, Fourth of July, 
Why aren’t there more holidays we celebrate
With sparklers and bursts of gunpowder?
Fireworks showering stars.

I love old family photographs
The ones printed on paper so I can
Hold in memory what I can no longer touch in life.

Dr. Pepper on crushed ice. 
The real deal, with cane sugar 
Like they made in Dublin, Texas before the lawsuit.

Heated car seats on a drive with no destination.

Scrabble, because without the challenge of those wooden tiles
I’d never have found my Qi.

Coffee with friends,
Sweetened with memory,
Flavored with gossip, 
Catching up over caffeine.

Swimming pools blue and chlorinated 
To make my eyes red and
Turn my hair green like 
When I was young and stayed in the water
Until the whistle blew.

The Texas State Fair welcome from Big Tex and 
Fletcher’s fried corn dogs. 
Ferris Wheels thrill us with a hint of danger and maybe
Something wicked.

Thank you, Ray Bradbury
You showed me things are not always what they seem to be,
But they can also be anything we imagine them to be.

Scented candles warm the room where I write,
Sometimes with gel pens on blank journal pages. 
I love the promise of adventure a new story brings.

Thanks to Sarah Lofgren and Louise Foerster for tagging me in the “40 Things” trend. I’ll add anyone else who hasn’t already completed this challenge, consider yourself tagged, and feel free to tag me so I’ll see your list.

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