“Umph! What a nuisance. This tiresome skein—full of knots. I can’t find the end of it!”
Anne jerked, tugged, giving an impatient shake trying to unwind the silk skein.
In the meager office-studio adjoining the house, an hour’s lunchbreak caught up with the busyness of the morning.
Seated in the niche of the bay window, Dora whined, “It’s like the law. With Dad’s photography business: police clearance, public-liability insurance, working with children-check...all these web-of-hullabaloos, just for taking pictures!”
Anne liked Dora’s descriptives.
“In his case, I don’t think Dad will take long unwinding. He’ll do the right thing,” Bess said.
“The law makes knots and reins; have us so pinched of Dad’s sweat-earned money with every last dime.” Dora exaggerated.
“What are you thinking, Glen?” Bess noticed him—who was two years older than she. ”Why do you look so grave?”
Still pulling the tiresome silk only tightening the knot more, Anne managed to show interest in her favorite brother who put down the letter he was reading.
“Glen, you’ve been mulling over that letter,” Bess grinned as she started perfecting the photos which were filed up for editing. Dad taught her the trade.
Glen sprang up from the sofa, and walked up to Anne.
“I’ll help you with that first, wee thing.” He gave his sister a kiss on her
forehead. At eighteen, she was still his baby sister. “A sobering thought just lodged out of your mouth.”
Dora laughed, “Anne? Sobriety and gaiety wrestle constantly in that little head of hers...the latter reigns.” Dora arched up her legs, pulled down her ankle-length
dress, and rested her chin on her knees. The alcove at the window was her
respite from thinking. Dora laments just about anything—from flaunting her auburn long hair, pluck-lined eyebrows, and trendy apparel—a taste of queen Jezebel’s and Anne’s spirit, which she secretly coveted.
Anne watched in admiration. At any prompt, Glen’s fingers matched his mind. He patiently passed the reel in and out of the threaded silk.
“So, what’s brewing in your head?”
“Just like threads from an intricate skein—pride is a mesh of tangles of the soul. Your outward appearance tell on you, Anne.”
“You sound like you’ve lost your mind.” Anne never dared oppose her brother. “Outward appearance is a matter of taste and personal preferences-- nothing else.” A flippant sour-grape, more than was necessary for one to grasp what Anne was saying.
Anne tipped her chin towards Bess whose back was turned--working on the pictures.
She often sneered at Bess’s stupid notions about modesty. Her sister’s white snood, or as referred, a veil, reproached her secretly. There was something about her sister’s countenance, so beautiful. But Anne would not admit to it.
“’Beauty is in the eye of the beholder’!” Anne’s opinions would never unleash to giving up her rights.
“You’re right, Anne.” Bess finally spoke, “and my most desire is to remain in the Beholder’s beautiful glory—by doing His will.”
“Hmph! You talk just like Mom.” Anne disputed.
“Wanna’ see the letter and photo from Sal?” Glen showed the treasured possession that came an hour ago in the mail.
Dora jumped from her favorite niche. Her musings were ended, “So, this is thegirl!”
Nit-picking sarcasm loosed from Anne’s tongue, “I like the color of her “modest” dress, but she looks like a potato sack.”
Bess grimaced at her.
Anne knew that anyone reasoning with her was like they’re babbling to a brick wall. Pharisees,as Anne dubbed them, her imaginary rabbis chanting to her--a spiritual giant-plinth.
Ugh! See if you try!
Bess sighed and pleaded, “You’ve shut your eyes from truth and correction. Examine yourself, Anne. Do you have the peace of Christ deep within? You must get yourself right with God.”
Deep in thought, Glen cleared his throat, “I’ve seen real beauty in Sal’s modesty and countenance. Her obedience to Jesus, surrendered under His authority, drew me closer to the Lord.”
Taken aback, Anne’s most loved brother in the world... what does he think of me?
Was she rebelling? Was she prideful? Had she tasted the pride-of-life, coveted glamour, and preferred not to go in conflict with them--to fit in the crowd?
Her struggle with truth, the broad path she chose was the easy way out, than doing God’s will. God, irrelevant in this culture!
Anne thought about the tiresome skein she was trying to untangle. Was this her life, entangled with the world?
What if Bess is right?
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