An Elderly Couple

Young lovers they were; old lovers they are.
For fifty years they have traveled together through this life,
with its happiness, its sorrow - sharing as one, never apart far.
This old husband truly cherishes this old wife.

Today he awakens...something is wrong.
He does not hear the birds’ glorious morning song;
instead the angels are wailing. Oh, how they do weep!
His precious wife has died peacefully in her sleep.

He tries to rouse her...her body is no longer alive,
a body grown weary and frail, now fatally old,
while her inner beauty still blossomed, her spirit thrived.
Among the elderly it is a familiar tale, repeatedly told.

He lies down beside her, one last time taking her hand.
“You are my rock, the foundation upon which I stand.
Without you with me, what will I do? What will I do?
People will assure me life goes on. If only they knew!

My life is over. I must exist as an empty shell of a man,
with half my heart missing - knowing no joy, no happiness.
I shall pretend to be alive...secretly envying when I can
search among the angels and find you waiting in their midst.”

As predicted, he walked among the living three years more,
never enjoying being alive, not once feeling loved as before.

Harry Edward Gilleland      01.22.03