“The Snow Bench”

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“The Snow Bench”

     In viewing its cold bitter beauty, that could be my body buried under the snow on that lonely bench. In a warmer June I sat with a young nose-freckled, fresh-faced lass, held her hand, and told her that I loved her. Her smile that responded to my words is etched forever in my heart, along with a sweet silky blonde tress that fell across her left cheek. We embraced there on that bench for long moments, kissing as lovers do, not with a burning passion but with some mystical deep awareness of something that promised an eternal bonding.
     Our lunch hour over, we rose from the bench. Her blue eyes sparkled in the sunlight with her smile. She hurried away from me to return to her office. Standing there, I watched her gaily gait, her delightfully bouncy bottom, and thought myself the luckiest man in the world. My lips were fixed in sublime capitulation to our love. When she waved one last time, I turned, walked in the opposite direction, humming a love song from ‘My Fair Lady.’ It did not matter that I felt like a silly school boy. My heart was held by another. Another’s heart was held by me.
     This park with all the snow and particularly that bench is a place I now often visit. That could be my body buried under the snow on that bench. I was never to see Susannah again. Death took her from me soon after that June day of so much promise. I’m told to get on with my life… Words signifying nothing. My life is now the drear and the cold of this park scene. My memory can persuade the snow to leave momentarily for a June day of promise, but my heart cannot hold back its never-ending grief.
     Viewing the picture of the ‘the snow bench’ and the wintry park (much larger than seen here), there came a challenge to write a poem, a song, a story that could be no longer than three hundred words. For some inexplicable reason my mind settled quickly on a fanciful story, and, in fifteen minutes, the narrative was complete. Obviously, my poem, my song, my story (as was my choice) could have had a happier theme on which to focus. There was something about the bench, the way the snow had settled there, the rather dreary scene winter often brings, that brought me so quickly to this short poignant piece. Sadness comes all through the year but winter has come by its extreme nature to be the season for dying. All of us have lost loved ones. “The Snow Bench” somehow brought me to write about a fragile acknowledgement that some of us had need to accept.
Billy Ray           http://www.about.me/brchitwood
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