The House That Floyd Built
Dishes done, Mary Beth rubs lotion on her hands.
They hurt frequently now. Simple tasks are hard.
She suffers reaching for things, and such.
Oh, but she loves this old house.
She drapes the washcloth over the shiny faucet.
She stares beyond the sunset,
Beyond the blazing color she once loved.
Then, slowly draws the blinds.
Twice, she rearranges the rocking chair.
Floyd had built it with his hands,
Then said the chair was his.
"It almost cost a squabble," she thinks in disbelief.
That old house started out with two rooms,
Just enough for them to get by,
And over the years, he added on to it,
Expanding his labor of love.
His essence now burdens the lonely house.
Mary Beth feels his presence;
His hand, on everying she touches,
Touching her back.
"Where do you want 'your' chair?" She reminisces.
"You finished it, love!"
"Where do you want it?" He smiled.
"Under the eastern window,
I like the morning light to read by."
Bolting down the last floorboard,
His work was done.
Loving times were spent on that porch,
"Sometimes, past bedtime," she remarks.
Mary Beth turns off the lights,
Stops to examine the room she leaves behind.
The clock ticks in the darkness, the refrigerator hums,
All in perfect order and her day is done.
She remembers the sunrise of long ago,
When he kissed her,
As he did each morning,
On his way to work.
"I'll always love you," he said,
Caressing her long brown hair.
She waved as he walked away,
Never to return.
In vain she waited through that sunset,
And many more to come.
Sometimes, till way past bedtime,
Hollowed by his absence, asking herself: "Why?"
Her silver head resting on her pillow now,
Mary Beth closes her eyes
And hears the words
That repeat themselves each night:
"Till death do us part."
"Sleep well, my love," she whispers,
Knowing she will love him
Until time comes
For that final good night.
Tick-tock the clock, hummm......
Carmen Ruggero . 2002 & 2003