Dear Beverly

Decades after I last saw you,
I wrote you a letter but didn’t
know where to send it.
I wanted you to know how
much it meant to me that you
included me in your family.
We met in 7th grade, and
soon discovered that we
were born a day apart at
the same local hospital.
Our mothers were
there at the same time.
We always joked that we
were in adjoining bassinets.

As we got to know each other
better, I started spending
nights or weekends at your house.
I never invited you into my home
in all those years that we were friends.
I was embarrassed and ashamed
at my father’s alcoholism and our
less than adequate living conditions.
I didn’t even know the word for what
my father’s troubles were and I didn’t
have the words or courage to tell you
how deeply it affected me.
And you never asked me why,
perhaps both of us too shy.
But being able to spend time
with you and your family,
even joining you on
vacations, was a nice break
and gave me a sense
of normalcy.

As we got older, we went
on dates together with
guys, you mostly with
Bill, who would end up
being your husband one day
and father of your boy.
Our lives took very different
paths after high school however
and we lost touch. You went on
to become an accomplished
nurse and I went the way of
spirituality and communal life.
Some years later we
reconnected back in Orlando.
You and Bill had divorced and
you were about to marry
another. I found out that
your father had passed
away from Alzheimers
many years prior when
he was in his fifties.
It took him young.

We met one other time
when I learned your
mother had passed,
but we drifted apart
again…never really
regaining the friendship
we had forged before.
And then came the day
I sat in stunned silence
as I read your obituary.
I never found out what had
happened…how your life
had ended. I hadn’t
used the opportunity
to let you know how
much you meant to me.
But I like to think that
love doesn’t have boundaries
and you know how much I cared.
Love, Gayle

I too tweaked the prompt today but this really impacted my life and I wanted to share it. I truly believe that all my loved ones know that I love them.

Our newest team member, Kelly, asks us to write love letters to someone before it’s too late or let someone know that we care for them over at dVerse Poets:  http://dversepoets.com/2015/10/27/im-going-to-miss-you-when-youre-gone/

We Three

You two sisters and I,
we three came home
to only one mother
now still alive.
 
But we rejoiced in our
bond that has held us so
tight  through decades of
memories that we love
to impart.
 
Though many years pass
between our visits, we pick
right up where we leave
off as if no time had elapsed.
 
The familiarity of childhood
play, roaming the woods,
biking for miles, tea parties
and birthdays shared
somehow seems an
unshakeable foundation.
 
We are intrinsically connected
and steadfast like nature’s
rhythm, the seasons
and the comforting cycles
of the sun and the moon.

Abhra is our host today over at dVerse Poets and invites us to contemplate homecoming:  http://dversepoets.com/2014/08/12/poetics-homecoming/

HAPPY BIRTHDAY, TRISHA!

I love a friend

I’ve never seen

A clear connection

Not a dream

It all began

As we shared intentions

And we grew even closer

Through private messages

We opened our hearts

Though continents apart

A remarkable soul

So much in common

She taught me much

And shared her views

The respect I hold

Is a treasured blessing

Precious friend

You’re in my heart

The distance between us

Means nothing at all

HAPPY BIRTHDAY, MY DEAR FRIEND TRISHA!
I’M WISHING YOU MUCH LOVE AND HAPPINESS TODAY

YOU HAVE A SPECIAL PLACE IN MY HEART

LOVE,

GAYLE 

BEST POET FRIEND AWARD


You are new to me
And I’m the same to you
But
Words keep us bonded.
Ink makes us siblings.
And the passion that we’re having
Is as hot as the sun burning.

 

I WOULD PERSONALLY GIVE THIS AWARD TO THE FOLLOWING PEOPLE:
JINGLE
For being such an inspiration to everyone.
You can only do much.

JAMIE
For all the wise thoughts!
Thanks much!

GAYLE
For never failing to visit my page since I started joining the rally.
I appreciate it.

 

I am deeply touched by this kind gift given to me–thank you B.  How very thoughtful you are–and love your sweet poem.  I am very new to this poetry group and I have been so lovingly embraced by so many–it has meant a lot to me.  And I agree with you about Jingle and Jamie–they both are extraordinary people!

Being With the Dying

When my mother’s best friend, Katherine, became ill with stomach cancer, her daughter enlisted Katherine’s friends to be of support as she went through her chemotherapy treatment and subsequent recuperation.  Her daughter lived out of state and could not be with her day-to-day.

I had known Katherine my entire life.   She was one of the most positive, bright lights I had ever known.  Her daughter and I had spent much time together as children which included many hours  swimming in the beautiful lake that they lived on.  Katherine’s husband had died many years prior.

Her daughter was very organized and efficient with setting up people in shifts to take turns staying with Katherine during her illness.  Sometimes this included remaining overnight with her.  But Katherine had a very independent nature, even at age 87, and at times would insist that she was OK and send us home.  Her daughter had tried her best to convince Katherine to move to North Carolina and stay with her family, but Katherine always refused.  She had been there for over 50 years.  During one afternoon, she confided in me that she would never leave her beloved home on the lake.   The house had an enclosed porch that overlooked the water and we would sit out there for hours as we talked and relaxed.  Her eyes would occasionally scan the lake and she would comment on a bird that had caught her eye or an activity by a neighbor around the water’s edge.

We were able to share ourselves like never before.  She regaled me with all kinds of stories from her past and shared intimate feelings.  She told me she was totally at peace and was not fearful of death.  I felt somehow as if I were a vessel for her to pour her heart into and was so grateful that I could be of service to her in this way.

I marveled at her serenity during this difficult time.  There was no “battle”, just gentle, quiet acceptance and the allowing of what was.  She illustrated to me what it meant to live in the moment.  Her ease and even emotions were a gift to me as well. 

One day she tired as we had been sitting on the porch for quite some time and so we retired to her bedroom.  Climbing into her bed, I propped myself next to her as we watched television.  A short time later, as I noticed her eyes getting heavy, I told her I would leave and let her sleep.  Lowering myself down on the bed so I could look into her eyes, I held her hands in mine and told her how much I loved her.  She smiled at me with beaming love in her clear, sweet, blue eyes and told me how beautiful I was.  Tears pooled in my eyes as I realized, in that moment, what grace she possessed.

Katherine died quietly in her sleep with hospice in attendance several months after her diagnosis.  Her bedroom window open to the lake.

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