I found this poem the other day in Mom’s keepsakes. It was written by my dad many years ago. It was written about his brother Hubert Tackett and his sister Yvonne Tackett Hall. They were the three children that hung together on their homeplace on Caryville Mountain in Campbell County, Tenn. Their baby sister Esther Tackett Wagner was born after them but she was too young to go on their adventures in Caryville.
My Brother, Sis and Me
By Marshel Tacket
One day when I went walking
Out there among the trees
I wished to breathe the mountain air
And set my mind at ease.
As I ravel through my thoughts of yesteryear
It quickly brought a smile
I felt the presence of someone special
So I sat down for a while.
Flowers bloomed all around me
Birds sang in every chord
I knew this someone special
Was the presence of the Lord
So I let go of my thinking
And reminisced for a while
About the days of yesteryear
When I was but a child.
My eyes saw things I’d long forgot
In the hills of Tennessee
How we went barefoot on plowed ground
My brother, sis and me
We’d count the nest of each bird we’d find
It filled our hearts with glee
We’d count the eggs and wait their hatch
My brother, sis and me.
I noticed the gate post was leaning
I’d never noticed it before.
Where were the hinges that held the gate
In the days before the war?
Could it be there was no gate,
That it had decayed and fallen down
Again I looked and said it could be true
For the gate was lying on the ground.
Decayed and battered from wind and rain
And faded from the use of many years
I knew at last that time had woven its web
And I could not hold back the tears
Our first house was made of logs
And had a big rock chimney
It was home to five other kids
And my brother, sis and me.
Our only road was just a path
Climbing up and down every ledge
And if we moved anything from place to place
We always used a sled.
How could anyone be more rich
Or that matter, more free
Than three children on a remote rocky mountain farm
In the hills of Tennessee?
Three kittens followed us
Every step we took from home
For they represented all our earthly treasures
For they were all our very own
The dog, he barked
And we all ran to him with glee
Sis took hold of a big grapevine
And shook a possum from a tree
As we walked that day among the trees
My brother, sis and me
Then I arose and looked around
Light rain began to fall
The sun had sunk low in the west
And the birds had ceased to call
‘Twas then I learned I’d spend the day
Just reminiscing of the past
But when my mind returned to present times
I should have known it could not last.
There was no bells up in the fields
Where once we kept our cow
No oil lamps upon their bench
No horse to pull the plow
No rainy day to rat the crib
Or to hide among the shucks
No soap to make, no hogs to kill
To blow bladders from their guts.
How could it be that Mom was old
And Dad not far behind?
Their coal black hair had turned to gray
No doubt that some was mine.
Look up old man, a voice did say
Although they’re old and bent
They could have been like others
For which my angels went
To call away both Mom and Dad
While in their youthful days
Then you wouldn’t have had those memories
To feast upon today.
So as we feast let us never forget
The things we had on a rocky farm in Tennessee
The joy we shared, the love we had
My brother, sis and me.
Although we can’t go back again
And hear the cowbells ring
I’ll be content that God does allow
To do the next best thing.
With Thanksgiving coming up I thought this would be an appropriate poem for the column. I know one of the things we are most thankful for this year is our family and especially our precious mommy, Dorothy Pennington Tacket.
Another blessing we are thankful for this year is my sister Delores Holbrook’s new grandson. He was born this past Friday, Oct. 26. Believe it or not he weighed 10 pounds and 14 ounces. He is already wearing three-month-old baby clothes.
His maternal grandmother is Vada Toler. His paternal grandparents are Kenneth and Delores Holbrook. His parents are Steven and Chasity Holbrook. He also has a big brother, Zaniel Branham. I can’t wait to get to hold him.
My three sisters, brother, and I were all born within six and a half years, so we were very close. When we were growing up we always had somebody to play with. We also had all the kids in the hollow if we got tired of on another. We spent most of our time playing in the woods up and down Cane Hollow. We had trees and tree stumps named. One was hollowed out deep enough for us to pretend it was a kettle for brewing up leaves, sticks, buckeyes, acorns, and such. My sister Lucille used this for her witch’s brew. Like Dad’s words in the poem, most of the time we were barefoot and actually it was easier to climb up the side of the hill that way. Actually, I can’t remember wearing shoes until we had to go somewhere.
I want to ask everyone again to continue praying for our friend and rec center workout buddy, Scarlett Coots. There are still lots of benefits going on to help her with all the cancer costs. Also, remember our friend Earle Bone with cancer. Then, there’s my Aunt Linda with major complications with diabetes. Also, remember the Blair family and all the others who have recently lost loved one, especially my pastor, Bill Jones and his wife Sandy.
Oh how I would love to be able to read Oma’s column just one more time and read her famous ending; don’t forget to go to church this Sunday, and if your church has services throughout the week and on Sunday evening you know God wants you there then, too.