“Daughter, your faith has made you well; go in peace and be healed of your affliction.”
The Things You Take for Granted
She enjoyed leftover pumpkin pie. Relatives benevolently watching, dirty plates stacked, used forks atop.
“Have some,” they tell her husband. “Try the one with mincemeat.”
“Oh I will,” the husband agreed; “I’m waiting to use her utensils.”
“Usually no dishwasher.”
“We have one! Splurge and dirty two sets.”
How a Good Career Plummets
Speed-typist, his skills called upon by executives, CEOs, high-ups of every sort. His portable setup: keyboard above lap, micro-monitor above, flying fingers, eyes face-locked. Seeing’s optional; 100% accuracy his guarantee.
Then long-feared: shooting nerve pain, wrists aching afterwards. Fingers stiffen, cramping. Diagnosis: carpel tunnel from overuse. Heralding his end’s beginning.
Don’t Forget the Standard Miracles
Near hibernation. Muscles lax, occasionally jerking. Comatose, silent. Rhythmic chest rising, soft inhalation, exhalation. Hair strewn, face line-imprinted, guard utterly dropped. Restoration of innocence to world-hardened features. Such a delicate state, balancing between life and death: one edge, dark endless plummet. Other edge, waking, yawning, stretching, standing, conscious. Daily miracle.
Things Mom Remembers
First step. Shaky. Finger around Daddy’s hand, eyes bright.
Playground running, hollering, laughing. Skinned knees, Superman band-aids. Summer popsicles.
Book-bowed, pack straps straining. Trudging upstairs. Tearful shouted disagreements. Late-night discussions: God, universe, boys.
Long phone calls, dorm sounds. Exam talk, lonely, friends. Enormous check-writing. A certain boy.
Joy, pain, love.
Waiting for Harry
She slowly rocks, hair sunlit through lace curtains to white halo. Back, forth. Sixty years’ rhythm engrained. Rhythm soothed countless children. Quiet house settles, creaks familiar friends. Waiting for Harry. His presence lingers, photographic eyes tracing—back, forth. Veined arthritic hand stroking Peaches, last cat. Peaceful matter of time.