Gypsies on the Mountain

Mama and I sit on the front porch in the growing dark, watching a string of lights move along the side of the mountain.  I ask her what they are.  “It’s the Gypsies,” she says, “they always come back this time of year.”

“Where do they go off to?”

Mama tilts her head and pauses for a moment. “Someplace on the other side of the mountain, I reckon.”

A storybook picture fills my mind, of a tall covered wagon with pots and pans banging against its sides, drawn by large dark horses and led by dark-skin people in brightly colored clothes, barefoot children with tangled hair dancing along behind.

I see myself, one of those dark-skinned children, not the coming but the going, to that mysterious place on the other side of the mountain, in a Gypsy caravan with twinkling lights.  I wonder if I am really a Gypsy child.

“Why do they come back,” I say.

“Why, to steal our eggs.”

Did they leave me here?  I wonder.  Maybe they traded me for the eggs.

The house is small and dark; we go to bed early to make the lamp oil last longer.

Lying beside Mama in the growing dark I force my eyes to stay open to keep away the monsters that hover in the darkest corner of the room, waiting for me to go to sleep.  When they will invade my dreams and chase me through the terrifying night …..

 

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2 Responses

  1. Hi… Is this Stamper family the descendants of Jonathan Stamper and Rachel Parks? My daughters have a Mary Polly Stamper in their family tree, their Stampers also had links to the Phipps family , but I can’t seem to make the connection? Can you help?

    • Yes, it is. There are several Mary Polly Stampers but my great grandmother (in the Bee Charmer story on my site) was born November 9, 1863. Her parents were Malinda Phipps and Joseph Stamper. Malinda was descended from Samuel Phipps who fought in the Revolutionary War.

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