GRIEF & LOSS // angie warren

In 2009 we lived by my parents for two years, just doors apart. After dinner my mom would show up begging me to walk with her. Often times I had an excuse, but she rarely let me use it, and I joined her more than I didn't.

In early spring, our walks took us by a certain fence near the grocery story, with the most intoxicating air. We knew we were near long before our eyes found them. Purples, violets, whites. Billowing over the old worn down fence, nearly touching the ground. Wisteria.

Each time we passed by, my mother told me about them. How long for maturity, where they grow best, and that some day she would have a house covered in wisteria. Each time we repeated this mantra, and each time we snapped off a vine for ourselves. Like school girls we giggled, and ran away, our wisteria bouncing and falling into the wind as we went. We did this each walk until at last, the heat of late spring had taken them and all that remained were empty stems.

Six years would pass, in the spring of 2015 I nearly ran off the road when I saw them. A similar fence, with a similar billowing of purple over the side, nearly touching the ground. There to my left were the most intoxicating purples, violets, whites. Wisteria.

I stood for a moment, eyes pressed shut, inhaling their air. I tried to remember Clayton Road and her own wisteria, my mom standing next to me, telling me her tales. I tried to recount what she had taught me, how long for maturity, where did the grow best?

I grabbed a handful for myself, caring very little for those watching. Gently bringing them to my face, feeling high on flora, I was transported in time. There wasn't giggling or running away, I couldn’t hear her voice behind me, but I'd like to think she was smiling from Heaven, in a mansion covered in wisteria.