Dearly beloved

Dearly beloved

Dearly beloved,

I was listening to the years rendering such beautiful ballads of a woman who lived for children she made hers in love—ballads of you. Love marked you, in lettering so elegant; and today, I ponder the graciousness of God who adorned you, and bestowed you on us.

I was listening to the classes you taught, of life and of choices. Unusual, those classes, almost entirely wrought with examples, but oh so very effective. Most effective indeed. Bent over in work, your back became the sounding board for us, to reach heights yet unknown, to take a swing at stardust yet unconquered and make of ourselves what we may. Devotion clings to you as oil on canvas, painting a picture so exquisite—a picture of sturdiness and warmth, of fury and gentleness, of fire and ice.

You understood pain and discomfort, and their uncanny ability to keep the mind sober. And so they were visited upon us, in all affection, to bring us back from error, to give proper form to our thoughts and actions and words.

I was sprawled out on the couch, listening. Your voice was so soothing, like a jar of honey broken over all that was within me; your laugh was like a buoy—a…promise that wherever the winds may take me, everything would be alright. You, my mother, in numbered days often dispelled the weariness of a thousand battles.

In my unease at the thought of death, I find myself staring, trying to commit your face to memory. It is an irredeemable pledge we have taken as children of yours, but if tomorrow never comes, I thank you. In these insufficient words from a heart immensely grateful for you, I thank you—for that terrible, terrible love of yours.

Son,
For them who are yours in love.

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