It was in the "merry month of May, on the nineth day, 1996 that I decided to go and look for an angel! Where was I going to find "my perfect angel?" My little car packed again with all my art supplies began "the search!" Where is "an angel"..."my special angel?"...we (my car and myself) turned towards, Friendship Cemetery, Columbus, Mississippi. Friendship Cemetery is one of our national treasures because it is listed on the National Historical Sites in America! Its very old, and inside the gates"stands" great beauty, history, and peace. I slowly drove my car with reverance into the gates, spotted the "cemetery keeper" of Friendship...ask permission to paint, and he graciously gave me his permission.
Almost immediately I spotted "my perfect angel!" I pulled my car off the narrow path to the side, and with great excitement went over to meet the "little girl angel!" Oh, she was just beautiful, and yet darling too! There she stood with one foot in front of the other, as is she was going to step off her stone and go somewhere! I was so excited I began to quickly unpack my art supplies for the day. It was "an angel...picture perfect May day!" I introduced myself, "Hello, I'm Carole, and what is your name?" She almost looked shy and very quiet, and did not answer me...so I looked down at her tomb stone, and there was my answer! "She" is "ANGEL, MARY JULIA", and "she" has been standing here since 1896!
Placed my canvas on my easel..."Angel, Mary Julia"..."I've come over from your and "sister city"...Starkville, MIssissippi where I live...to meet and spend the day with you!"..." I am so happy to finally find you, and how have you been doing?" She seemed pleased that I had come, and I saw a sweet smile on her little face! Here the two of us were standing, and was it quiet and peaceful that morning. The only sounds we heard were the song birds singing and chirping! This was a great place to meditate and ponder over our deepest thoughts as well as deep feelings!
"Angel, Mary Julia" had her little arms and hands folded as if she might be gently holding a bouquet of Spring flowers in her hands. There were lots of wild flowers underneath my feet, and I just bet she had picked a few to hold and . Her pretty little face was..."ANGELIC", dignified as well as sweet. She had a "bobbed hair cut", a darling little dress, and on her back wonderful WINGS! She looked slightly plump as well as beautiful, and her feet were bear! I did not think she needed any shoes, and after all its great fun in MIssissippi to just go bare-footed in the May!
"Angel, Mary Julia" stood as the tallest tomb stone among the five stones. Count them! I called the stone she was standing, "her throne!" She was a "PRINCESS"! next to her is a stone with some inscription written on it, then a taller one with something written on it...but I could not read what was written on it either... behind it... is just a piece of base of a stone, and in the distance is a leaning smaller stone. "Angel, Mary Jane" stood out among all the rest, cause she is a ‘SPECIAL ANGEL!"
A tomb stone is not just white, white, but look at all the colors of my palette that I had so much fun seeing and then painting on my canvas...greys, pinks, purples, greens, dark green, lime green, green-green, touches of maroon, reds, yellows, blues, and even black...all mixed into the white marble figure! These same colors were in the other four tomb stones.
Look and see and "feel" the colors! The beautiful May day offered the dark green grass with grass sprigs of lime and yellow green, and turquoise! The ancient and stately Mississippi Magnolia Trees are absolutely magnificent! They have stood the test of time for over one hundred years,, and they must be some of the largest Magnolia Trees in Mississippi!
The dark leaves of the Magnolia tree offered me the very dark, dark color of "Black-Green" that I needed to make your eye go directly to her sweet, sweetmarble white face! The shadow of the next tomb stone gave me the second "Black-Green" that would also draw your eye into her face and body, and finally the dark green stand that she is standing on was my third "Black-Green" that I desired to bring your eye down to her precious little bare feet! This third dark, "Black-Green" HOLDS her feet and her body on the top of the tomb stone through out eternity!
As I sketched and painted, I began to get to really know, "Angel, Mary Julia" I said, "I love your very Southern name, "Angel Mary Julia"...we do that in "The South"...give sweet little girls a "DOUBLE NAME". Mary Julia is just so pretty, and you are just as pretty as your name!" "Do you mind if I just call you, Mary Julia?"...and you can just call me, Carole!" "So how has it been going all of these years?" "You know it is 1996,and you have been standing here since 1896...WOW!" "How did you get here?" How did you die?" "What was America, Mississippi like "back then?" Silence..."Oh well, I can only imagine!"
I began to think about so long ago in 1896 and this year of 1996, and suddenly I thought...we have "REAL ANGELS" around us every day! They are the people who are sweet, kind, and thoughtful every day who get up...and get dressed! Angels are people who have big HEARTS...who think of others rather than themselves...who wave as you are passing by on the streets...who smile and say, "how is your day going?"...or "you have a good day...now!" When you feel not as "chipper" as you should ...its an ANGEL who LIFTS you up...and their kind word and smile that encourages you to have a "skip in your step!" There are "REAL ANGELS" who "LIVE" with and by each one of us every day...from morning until night, and then again tomarrow! Now, I want you to think of at least ONE ANGEL...WHO IS SHE? WHO IS HE? WHO ARE THEY? ...call them by name! They are "OUT THERE!!!"
I found my "special Angel, Mary Julia" that May day in 1996 in a most "likely place" Friendship Cemetery, Columbus, Mississippi. I crossed our county lines...from Oktibbeha County over to Lowndes County...and there I discovered her! The day was ending, and I was exhausted painting, and doing all of the talking...all day long. What an "ANGELIC"...early morning that turned into a late afternoon I had spent get acquainted with MARY JULIA! You see I had really grown to KNOW and LOVE her!
I looked back once more and wanted to say, "Good Bye"..".be seeing you again soon...and I promise you, cross my heart...SHE SMILED SLIGHTLY...WINKED HER EYE......she she is still SMILING and WINKING back at YOU ...AND ME!... after all, "MISS ANGEL, MARY JANE" is A REAL ANGEL!