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Word Count: 718
Honeysuckle Jimson weed and Jerusalem oak seed My grandfather loved two things beyond all else the sound of rain that comes in the night and sleeping in a feather bed His greatest joy was when the two came together When I was a child in my grandfathers house there were summer nights when I would wake to hear him shuffling blindly though the kitchen I would rise to see him clad in his white long johns climbing the narrow attic steps Sometimes I would follow and find him deep in the old feather bed by the window Hush now Dont talk just listen he would say I would creep through the warm darkness where what seemed like thousands of wasp alarmed by our presence droned about and bumbled on the old dusty windows They wont bother you if you leave them alone Now lay still Yes sir Pop I would climb in the bed and curl against his body listening to the rain sifting through the branches of the big oak trees pattering on the tin roof of the house and dripping into buckets and cans My grandfather actually placed objects around the house to catch the drip from the eaves I remember the soft doc doc from an old bucket the ting ting of the rusty cans and the faint drumming of the shingled roof all blended into a symphony of percussions Jerusalem oak seed he would whisper Honeysuckle and Jimson Weed The beginning of his venture to sleep he believed that repeating names of plants would produce a growing drowsiness Sweet juniper sheeps tongue and love-lies-a-bleeding Once I asked him if he liked the feather bed so much why didnt he sleep in it all the time Moderation he said like the preacher says Some things are sweeter if they are taken in sensible doses After a moment he added Besides
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