Swinging, Shades of Blue and Trying to See God


Garland Texas 1965

Swinging makes me happy. It reminds me of being four or five in the backyard of our Garland Texas home, swinging to the hum of a neighbor’s lawn mower and the spicy smell of fresh cut grass. My older brother, Barry, taught me to swing reclining, so on that day, while leaning back with my arms out stretched, I saw the color blue for the first time.

Fascinated, I lay on the ground, draped my legs over the seat of the swing and I watched puffy, white clouds sailed across variegated shades of blue. My grandmother’s words, “God lives in Heaven, far above the clouds but you can’t see him,” came back to me. Staring pass the clouds into the deep blue, I was determined to see Him. But my quest was shattered by my mother’s concern.


My head popped up. She was standing at the screen door. What are you doing?” she asked.

“Looking at the sky.”

“Well get up from there like that, the neighbors thought you were hurt.”

If I didn’t mind she would fuss, but I wanted to keep looking. Momma waited at the door until I returned to my swing. Blue became my favorite color and the quest to see God remains.

*Author’s Note: I still love the hum of an old-fashioned lawn mower and the smell of fresh cut grass.

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