There must be 500 yards of fabric in there. My friend says I’m exaggerating, which is possible, but I don’t think so. The closet is full, a card table is full, bins are full. The woman bought fabric. As her best friend said today, “She loved sales, Andi.” And so I find myself, several times a day, standing a staring at folds and folds of blues and greens and the rust oranges she loved so much.

Our friend took her sewing machine, and will use it with love. She also took some fabric and notions. Mom’s friend took more fabric to cover a chair for her husband. Tomorrow, other women will come and take what they want – a yard or two here and there. Piece of Mom leaving with those who loved her.

I have this vision, if I didn’t want the fabric to be used by people who love it as much as Mom did, of unfolding all of it in a small room, layering aquamarine on brown on sunshine yellow. Piling the fleece in with the cottons. Stocking patterns melding with Pollack-like swirls blending with tiny stars and bold flowers. I see Dad and I laying all this fabric out and fluffing it up. Then, we walk in and lay in it. The thing that brought Mom comfort – for surely she bought these things because they made her smile and warmed her soul – comforting us, holding us up in our grief.

A man I used to know talked once of having a pillow room – a room stacked high with softness where he could go and lay amongst the comfort of fabric and stuffing. Now, as I look at the bins and bins of fabric and think of the hours of browsing and seeking that Mom took to find just what she liked, I think this man may have really been onto something. A room of softness, a room of comfort gathered one or two yards at a time.

Sea of Fabric