Windchimes

DSC05667“I wish your mother could see those windchimes,”
my father said,
looking at the green butterflies
and brass bells.

Their gentle tinkle
was beyond his hearing
like my mother was beyond …
I don’t know.

Beyond the day
when he could repay
for late nights
and house calls
and meetings
and reserve duty
and patients calling
and dinner waiting
and waiting
and waiting
for him to be home

She always had to share him
with the sick
the poor
the destitute

and with other physicians
and administrators
and nurses
and important folk
who received the same courtesy
as the unimportant

My mother may have felt
that she came last

So he bought the windchimes
last summer
and hung them
in the myrtle
where the gentlest breeze
could flutter through
and make
a plinkle-chinkle-tinkle
barely audible
wings brushing bells

My mother closed her eyes
from weariness
a few miles
and lifetimes
away

At the end
she had to know
that she was
always
first
as he spooned
the ice cream
into her mouth
and told her
that he loved her
time
and
again

the butterflies
could never speak
so clearly

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3 thoughts on “Windchimes

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