They Sang

Life on a farm in the forties and fifties could be hard, unforgiving, and working from dawn to dusk in the heat could drain the life from you.  Mom had a twin sister named Mamie and they were always together at work or play. When times were hard and they felt like they could do no more they would go sit in the shade of a tree or on the front porch and they would sing old gospel songs while clapping out a rhythm.

They would smile and laugh while they sang.  Mom had a good voice, but Mamie’s singing was like hearing angels. 

Even when we would sneak outside during church we could hear her voice and we would all get goosebumps.  The twins rejoiced in life and no matter how brutal and hard the day they would sing, and everyone would stop and smile.

A few days before mom passed away we were all sitting in her room looking at the floor. Then Mamie started tapping her feet and clapping her hands and that voice came out soft and slow building to a crescendo like a heavenly choir.  Mom smiled and, in that moment, she knew that Mamie was singing her home and that day mom started her journey to the other side.  Amidst the sadness of her time being near they sang, and for that moment they were two little girls again dressed in white sundresses sitting on the front porch singing.

Point Of View

It has always amazed me that no matter how hard life was at times, my family used singing to get past the hard times.  It had a way of touching your heart and soul and you knew that everything would work out and you would find a way to the other side.  Mamie could sing the saddest song yet bring joy to the listener, and the song would let you feel that things were going to work out as they should.


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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  1. Larry – You touched my heart with this story. What a wonderful gift to share with a loved one as they prepare to begin their eternal joy. Music sending your mother into eternity – music greeting your mother in eternity – joining in the music eternally. May music always fill your heart, my friend. And thank you for sharing this so that we are reminded of the hope we may possess.

  2. How I wish I could have Mamie come and sing to me! What an amazing gift to have in the family. I was so moved that she sang your mom to the other side. We should all have something that loving and soothing to gently support us as we pass.

    • The sad thing for me is all my aunts and uncles on both sides of the family are all gone. That’s why I try to write their stories so they are not forgotten