Prism fascinated children

From our January 2013 issue

By Hilda Born – Abbotsford, B.C.

I thought our home was one of the best in the village. We not only kept it neat and clean, but there were some special things in it.

We ate out of ordinary dishes, but I knew that on the top shelf in the pantry were pretty blue china dishes. They were rarely used – only for special company.

They had belonged to dad’s first wife, my sister Mary’s mother. She died of typhus soon after coming to Canada.

Another item in our home also came from this lady. At the time of her engagement to my father she gave him a silk embroidered wall-hanging. This had a place of honour in our living room.

In no other house in the village was there a green glass paperweight. This ornament was kept on the stationery shelf, well out of reach of curious children. However, on a really bright day we would pester mom to take it down.

As soon as we caught a sunbeam with it, rainbows danced around the room. For us this was magic. This hexagonal paperweight was cut with a prism in each corner which dispersed white light into the colours of the spectrum.

We later learned this explanation in science class, but I am still amazed that God lets a carved glass cube catch a rainbow in a sunbeam.

When mom was a widow, we took her with us on an outing to Vancouver Island. We enjoyed her company and she helped us with the children, however, when we took her home after the trip, she insisted on giving us something. She hurried into the house and came back with the ‘green stone’ as we called it.

“But mom,” I protested, “why give it to me, what will the others say?”

She quietly responded, “Some have already asked for it. But you didn’t. So here it is. Keep it for your family to enjoy.”