It was a cold night, she sat on the porch they always stayed, to stare as the stars grow in clear sky, waiting for him to come and visit like he always did.
It’s 25 years today Mary, Steven said as he moved over from the bench on the porch to sit on the step beside her, close enough to smell the burnt oregano smell of her hair.
You look good Mary, he said as he touched the skin of her face to push back a strand of her hair covering her eyes. ‘ I miss you, do you miss me’?
She turned to stare at him, words fail her as she met his blue eyes, they always seem to glow at night, radiating nothing but love and affection for her. It still surprises her how he managed to maintain his youthful figure.
Oh, Steven, my hands no longer have support, my waist hurts from always working in the garden alone, you know how hectic it can be down there, the weeds, the rose and oh the Dimorphotheca Sinuata, they grew out well…
Do you miss me? Steven asked again, this time with his brows raised so high
You know I do, Mary said, it’s so cold without you, the world is lonely, and me, I’m always sick without your love. I don’t just miss you, I miss all of you
Here take my hand, he stretched forth his hands towards her, she grabbed it and squeezed it while letting out a sigh of relief
You always have it Mary, I’m always with you, our worlds never moved apart, it’s just that somethings have to happen the way they do. People fall out of love, money, fame, but I’d never fall out of love with you, no matter the distance, never, never, never, never….
She looked up, I’d never too, she said and bent over to kiss him.
Ssshhhh, sssshh, Ssshhhh
The recording has stopped playing Ma, Come in for dinner, Angela called out from the kitchen
Mary got up and turned off the Radio,took out the tape and slid it into her pocket.
She’s kept the tape for 25 years, it was her last conversation with him, and it’s still Steven to her.
She carried Steven’s uniform along with her from the porch as she made her way into the house.
You okay Ma, Angela asked with concern, and how is he?
Oh yeah, he is great and he sends his regards, Mary answered blankly as she sat at the dinner table wondering what Steven would have for dinner in heaven…
By Ruth Brodrick.©