"Memories are such awesome things. When unleashed from the confines of what was…they glorify our todays and make favorable our tomorrows".
quote from OH Brother, written by Paul Ciccone, Jr.

Far too many people fail to grasp the natural wonder of things simply because they look through windows sullied by politics, religion and cultural murk. In the necessity of sustaining a living, we often become so involved in trying to secure a livelihood that we forget what life is truly about. We assume materialistic values and a willingness to sacrifice principle for social or public recognition and personal gain. We indulge whole-heartedly to be financially successful even to the point of relinquishing our dreams. We forget who it is we are and wonder who it is we have become. Yet, what we don’t readily realize is…that in our efforts at making a tolerable living and establishing our place in society, we fail to receive from life the wisdom and serenity it offers.

I have found fortune in many aspects of life, especially those concerning family and friends. I have discovered the satisfaction that comes from completing a goal, experienced the pride of accomplishment, known the rewards of parenting, and savored the ambience of friendship. Then, in the cycle of the living when the inevitable happens and personal tragedy brought me to my knees: when I thought all was for not, a comforting hand reached down, offered condolence, and I found reprieve. I have inherited good health and acquired many of treasures on my journey. In my world of memories, the hours of aloneness are diffused into smiles of recollection. They give reason to what was…purpose for what is, and hope for what is to come. They are the aspiration of our tomorrows and the biography that each of us wishes to share.

Wouldn’t it be grand if every situation in life that qualifies as a special occasion were one that gave reason to rejoice? However, in defining special, circumstance demands that we face reality and accept the brutally ugly truth which most of us would prefer to forget…life is not always pleasant. Events will take place that oft at times go the way of stingers and barbs, piercing our protective shells, swelling our bodies, dulling our thoughts, and filling our hearts with pain and remorse.
by Paul Ciccone, Jr.

Author's Bio: 

Paul was born in July of 1945, in the then unmapped and sparsely populated town of Leominster, Massachusetts. He volunteered for military service at the age of 17 and served as a United States Marine from April of '63 through July of '67-when he was honorably discharged a decorated veteran of the Vietnam Era. A father to four, published poet and retired master pressman, Paul now resides at his home on picturesque Naukeag Lake in Ashburnham, MA., where he pens away his retirement years freelance writing prose, poetry, and short stories.