Monday, January 11, 2010

Sweep Me Clean

Company was coming. I flung wide the doors to welcome some fresh air and sunshine. I sorted and put away stacks of mail. I cleaned out the magazine basket, the one that fills all too quickly with catalogs and papers. I wiped the Daddy-is-home!-nose-prints off the windows and the dust off the sills. “Our house is going to be so clean,” five-year-old Maddie declared getting into the spirit of things. “I’m going to sweep the kitchen floor.” Delighted to have her willing help, I smiled at her flouncing skirt as she galloped on her broom-horse into the adjoining room.

I checked her progress on my way to the laundry room to toss in a pile of dirty socks. The kitchen floor shone. Sunlight streaming through the window illuminated a sparkling surface. But something was amiss. Where were the grains of rice, scattered after the math lesson? Where were the bread crumbs, remnants of yesterday’s lunch? Where was the sand tracked in from the backyard? There was no pile of gathered debris in sight. Swish, swish, swish, went the broom, in all directions, as dust and grit was whisked away to congregate in the far-flung corners of the room. Out of sight to the casual observer, but still there nonetheless!

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