Gardening Dilemma By Henry Martin

July 18, 2011 Comments Off on Gardening Dilemma By Henry Martin

Twenty-four years, three months, one day, and seventeen hours of Good Mornings, Good Nights, How-was-your-days, and I-love-yous. Twenty-four years, three months, one day, and seventeen hours of falling asleep and waking up in the same bed, side by side, inseparable. We’d aged, but our love had not…we’d evolved, yet, we never stopped dreaming. Dreaming of growing old together, dreaming of riding the utopian wave of happiness to the end. And to think it all started with a simple, humble “I do.”

Cars, kids, dogs …

It all came and went, except for our home. Our first home, the house we bought the day after our wedding. And then, twenty-four years, three months, one day, and seventeen hours later, it all collapsed.

I’d come home early that day, a bank check, for the contractor who just completed our new roof, in my hand. I’d wanted him to be gone before she arrived, then I wanted to take her out to a nice dinner. When I saw her car in the driveway, I had no idea she was paying him already — in her own way.

“We’ll always have our memories,” she’d said after he put his pants on and left.

“Why?” I screamed. “Why!”

“I tried telling you so many times.”

I couldn’t listen to her after that.

So many times…

Really? I never found out what she had been trying to tell me. I guess I’d never been a good listener. Still, twenty-four years, three months, one day, and seventeen hours is a long time. I tried to get past that, tried to move on. Things never did go back to the way they used to be.

We’ll always have our memories.

I replayed those words in my head when I tried to force myself to fall asleep on the sofa. I tried to work up my anger to do something about it, but deep inside, all I wanted to do was hold her head in my hands, kiss her lips, and wait for her to smile back at me. She wouldn’t.

“You spineless loser!” she would scream as she shut the bedroom door in my face every time I brought it up.

But it’s all better now. I kiss her lips as I’m holding her head in my hands. She doesn’t scream. She doesn’t try to pull away. Wide-eyed, she stares at me without saying a word. Things are finally back to normal. I run my fingers through the locks of her hair as I walk to the kitchen window. “Now,” I ask her ever so gently, “Where would you like the rest of you? Under the begonias or the hollyhocks?”

© 2011 Henry Martin

When he’s not buried elbow-deep in some greasy motorcycle project, Henry Martin enjoys reading quality literature and writing prose and poetry of varying coherency. He finds inspiration in conquering the open road while trying to outrun some of the characters he created in the past. He lives with his family in NH, surrounded by coyotes, foxes, and bears.

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