I had an uncle whose name was Charles - but everyone called him "Chink" (I'm not sure how the name evolved), He was, in my mind, the epitome of a true man. He was tall, quiet, hard working, loved his wife and children, was never lazy, and a thinker. My most vivid memories of him are of him sitting at his dining room table enjoying a pipe after dinner and a long days work - or of him relaxing on the front porch in the evening with his pipe. Though I never heard him say so - he often had a look on his face as though those times at the table or on the porch were the most perfect moments in life. I remember him seeming so content. He is the only person I knew as a young boy who smoked a pipe - and I think of him often when I light my own. I doubt he knows what impression he left on me, and I hope that someday someone remembers me the way I remember him. He is the inspiration for the following tribute:
Golden rays of sunlight spread,
Upon the harvest field.
A savory, visual feast for all,
Who’s frantic ways will yield.
The evening chill, a cup of warm,
A melodious creaking swing,
Whose only challenge musically,
Are the Katydids who sing.
And the yellow glow of kitchen lights,
Invites a pleasant thing,
And so a well used briar glows
As sweet virginia’s given wing.
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"It is ordained in the eternal constitution of things, that men of intemperate minds cannot be free. Their passions forge the fetters." - Edmund Burke