A Cottage By The Sea

–Part Two -The Open Book

Even after so many years, you could feel my Grandfather in this cottage by the sea and like many before me, I found the book lying on the leather chair and the bookmark still there on the page where the book was closed.  It was said that the book could never be read until the reader took a last breath.  I knew at some point I would have to open the book and remove the bookmark revealing my life’s story.  I remembered that Grandfather told me I could only read the past and the blank pages were the unwritten stories I had yet to live.  The future was waiting for me to fill the boundless pages and chronicle my life until the next inheritor would open the book and the process starts again.

The cottage was full of memories of my childhood, the smell of leather chairs, leather-bound books, and there on the easel was the painting of the old man and his dog.  It still waited to be completed, the unfinished painting was a burden to both my Grandfather and my Dad.  Perhaps it was never meant to be finished.  I held his brush in my hand and I could feel the desire of the brush to touch the painting, to finish its purpose of being complete.  Walking into his study I could smell his sandalwood cologne, the sweetness of his pipe tobacco, and his bourbon shelf still full.

He had so many first edition books, and he loved the many stories of Hemingway, Edgar Allen Poe, and Henry David Thoreau.  Later in life, he found the southern writers, William Faulkner, Kate Chopin, and Eudora Welty.  I sat behind his desk and opened the books wrapped in paper holding even more books and original art, but the surprise came in the form, not of first editions but the original manuscripts.

I closed my eyes and awakened to the stories of the early 1900s.  I could still smell the paper holding scents of cigars, expensive perfumes, and words written by people no longer with us, yet maybe their spirit sits with me in Grandfather’s study.

Perhaps I will stay here a while, walking my dog along the shore and maybe I will finish Grandfather’s painting.  He left many letters for me to answer, yet across the room sits the open book, bound in leather, and within its empty pages the stories will be told.

Part One:

Success? A Cottage By The Sea | BIZCATALYST 360°


Larry Tyler
Larry Tyler
Awaken the possibilities … then unleash them. After 55 years of successful retail management, I have returned to my passion of writing. I write Poetry, Storytelling, and Short Stories. As a child, I grew up on front porch storytelling. I would sit and listen to my Dad and his brothers tell these great stories that were captivating, and I always wanted to hear more. I wanted to experience the things they talked about. I started writing at a young age and reading everything I could get my hands on. At twelve years old I started a storytelling group and several of my friends became writers or poets. At 16 I hopped box cars and worked the tobacco fields, orange groves, picked cotton, and spent many nights around a campfire listing to life stories. Someone once asked me why I wrote. It consumes an amazing amount of time and I assure you it is not going to make me rich. I write so that my children can touch and feel my words telling of the ones that came before us and the stories they told me. These are the chronicles of our family and even though they come from my childhood memories and are deeply rooted in a child’s remembrance at least they may feel what it was like in the time before them and cherish the things the elders left behind. I am a Columnist & Featured Contributor, BIZCATALYST360 and I have The Writers Café, a group on LinkedIn that features Poets, Writers, Artists, Photographers, and Musicians . On Facebook I have two groups and one page; Dirt Road Storytelling, From Abandoned To Rescue Dogs And Cats, and About Life, Love And Living. As writers, it is true that we honestly do not know what we hold within us until we unleash it. When our words inspire others only then will inspiration return to the writer. I will spend my twilight years in search of the next story, the next poem, and the next image. I will take the time to enjoy my Wife, our Dogs, and Cats, and our amazing new home and I will always find the time to walk down a dirt road I truly hope is that I never have to read another book on Leadership, be on a conference call or see another plan o gram as these were the tool for what I did in life and not about who I am.

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