Sunday, April 29, 2007

'Nita, Needle, and Thread

Among Juanita's gifts was the way she worked with needle and thread. She had her sewing machine and made dresses for herself, and Julia, and shirts for my dad and me. I remember a suit she made for me for Easter when I was in the second grade. In her later years, when she could afford to buy all those things, she turned to cross-stitch and embroidery. She was active in the local chapter of the Embroiderers' Guild of America. (The "EGA", which my dad libelously said meant "Enraged Grandmothers of America".) She did beautiful work, giving most of it away. In fact, before she started something new, she knew to whom she would give it.

Among the things she kept was a wedding cross-stitch that celebrated her marriage on March 6, 1943, to my dad, Walter. In the bottom third of that work, she stitched this poem:

I pray that,
     risen from the dead,
I may in glory stand,
A crown perhaps
      upon my head, But -
A needle in my hand.

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