Every year she’d bring a basket full of mums in colors good enough to eat. Saffron, cinnamon, lemon and plum. She’d plunk them down on the table and wave away our thanks, like the flowers were an afterthought. But you could see in her eyes how much she loved that we loved them.
She’d take my face in her wrinkled hands and I could smell the kitchen there, just like I could see it in the mums. All the years of Christmas cookies and gingerbread, pumpkin pie and vanilla cake, strawberries and Earl Grey tea.
Those were the days when I felt warmest inside. When the clouds and the gray were furthest away.