Thanksgiving. Awoke with the first light, the sun rising over the Cascades. I lay in bed and tried to recall the last time my mother made a pie. When was it? Which decade? Probably some time in the late 1970's. When did she last cook a Thanksgiving meal? My older siblings took over, at some point, in a rented apartment or a first home, our family group getting bigger and bigger until we began to split off into our own smaller groups. In these later years I spent the day at my in-law's home, a beloved house whose back deck perches still above Thornton Creek. I miss these days most — the scents, my mother-in-law's Southern hospitality ("don't you bring a thing, Miss T.!). I've inherited her sterling tableware, with which I set my small table this morning for my sons and me. The long-handled spoon whose sole purpose is for reaching into the turkey and pulling out the stuffing.
Addition/subtraction: families. Births/deaths. Our numbers swell and recede, swell and recede.
We're eating early this year — both sons keep very early work schedules. No need for candles with this brilliant sunlight. And no long tables set out the length of the living room. We've dwindled to this small family, with two cats on scrap patrol. Three chickens in the yard pecking for bugs. One turkey, two pies. Enough — more than enough —of everything.