Do you have something from a relative or friend who has passed away?

If you don’t, do you wish you did?

If you do, what kind of memories does that artifact invoke?

I have a friend who has a pipe that his great, great, great grandfather smoked. He says when I hold it , I think of how’s it been handed down from father to son. My friend says he has smoked from the pipe a couple of times but it now has a crack and he’s afraid of the damage additional heat might cause.

Another friend has her great, great grandmother’s wool scarf; it is now framed and on a wall in her house. She says that every time she passes it, she thinks of a woman she never knew … drawing the scarf around her neck to block the cold.

My wife has a hand mirror that belonged to her great, great grandmother.

It is showing signs of age as some of the reflective material is decaying.

It is next to the sink and while my wife has a large mirror in front of her, often she picks up that hand mirror and looks at her reflection.

I asked, Do you at times imagine your grandmother staring into the mirror?

She answered: All the time.

She never knew the first woman, maybe girl to see herself on that looking glass … but there’s a connection over all these decades.

I’ve even looked into it and imagined the first owner maybe checking her eyes, teeth or smile. What did she see not just with her eyes but her inner vision?

What was happening in her life on any given day she peered into the mirror?

What could she see behind her?

I find these connections to our past fascinating … when you think of the person who looked into a mirror or smoked a pipe or held a hammer or slept in a bed passed down through the ages.

I am in wonder thinking about those lives that continue long after they are gone.