Deformed Squirrels and Headless Virgins


Ah spring, a time when one’s thoughts turn to getting the outdoor decorations out. I did exactly that a couple of days ago around the house.

Usually, my mother and I work together to do this rite of spring. This year, however, she can’t do as much, so I got to have all the fun myself. I actually enjoy it. It has become a tradition with me. I get to put out the duck, the frogs around the birdbath, and the squirrels. I should mention the deformed squirrels.

It seems like over the years paint has chipped off the statues and we really haven’t the time to repaint them. It’s really the mama squirrel that’s in the worse shape. I always put them out on the deck in the back yard so no one can see them unless you really went out to inspect them, so, I guess they’ll do for one more summer.

As I was getting out the deck chairs, I ran across the headless virgin. I was in shock to think that my mother would keep something like that a secret from me. The family shame is hidden from the world and a good thing that it is.

I went back inside and asked my mother, “How did the headless virgin become headless?”

She told me that when I was still in the hospital, she was moving it in the ‘Red Flyer’ wagon we used for moving heavy objects. It was standing straight up, instead of lying flat and fell over and the head smashed into a thousand little pieces.

Ashamed that she smashed the head of the Virgin Mary, my mother rolled the headless torso back to it’s place in the enclosed patio, where it remains ever since, gone but surely not forgotten.

I suppose I’ll have to ask our parish priest how to dispose of a headless virgin. I’d bettr make sure he knows it’s a statue.

Meanwhile, I’m looking at the yard. It looks nice with all the stuff out. But those squirrels! I got to do something about those squirrels! Maybe some paint! Either that or a paper bag over their heads.

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