Thursday Tidbit: A Valentine’s Day Poem

The poem below appears in My Ideal Partner: How I Met, Married, and Cared for the Man I Loved Despite Debilitating Odds. My late husband Bill and I wrote it together. Click the Play button below the poem to hear me read it. Happy Valentine’s Day.

WHAT IS LOVE?

 

Being warmed from within by another,
having someone with whom to share dreams,
a soothing voice that comforts you,
gentle hands that smooth life’s hardships,
strong arms that hold you close,
lips that bring you pleasure.
Love is a heart that’s yours forever.

 

 

My Books

 

My Ideal Partner: How I Met, Married, and Cared for the Man I Loved Despite Debilitating Odds

That’s Life: New and Selected Poems

How to Build a better Mousetrap: Recollections and Reflections of a Family Caregiver

We Shall Overcome

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Abbie’s in Love

Abbie-1

No, I haven’t found another man. Although my late husband Bill has been gone four years, I still love him. This Valentine’s Day, while others celebrate love for those still living, I still love a man who has left this world.

In light of Debbie Reynolds’ passing, I thought it would be nice to sing her 1957 hit, “Tammy,” during my performances at Sugarland Ridge and Westview last month. I now realize the song is also about me but in a different way. The following poem illustrates this. Click on the title to hear me read it.

***

I’M IN LOVE

 

Like the whispering cottonwood,

hooting owl, whippoorwill,

murmuring breeze,

melting snow dripping off the roof announces it.

The crow in the distance caws it.

The sun in the sky shouts it.

The cold winter breeze sighs it.

Although he’s no longer a part of this world,

He’s still with me in spirit.

I long to be in his arms

where I’ll sing for joy.

 

***

Now here’s my rendition of “Tammy.” Happy Valentine’s Day.

***

Author Abbie Johnson Taylor

We Shall Overcome

How to Build a Better Mousetrap: Recollections and Reflections of a Family Caregiver

That’s Life: New and Selected Poems

My Ideal Partner: How I Met, Married, and Cared for the Man I Loved Despite Debilitating Odds

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In Loving Tribute

On this Valentine’s Day, here’s a poem about love that endures through difficult times. I posted this last year, but it’s worth a second look.

The following poem was inspired by a song from a movie that was released in the late 1990’s. I never heard of the song or the movie until 2005 after my late husband Bill proposed to me. He was living in Fowler, Colorado, at the time, and I was here in Sheridan, Wyoming. We met through a magazine, and after a long-distance friendship during which we communicated regularly by e-mail and phone and met face to face twice, he sent me a letter, out of the blue, asking me to marry him. This was in January.

A month later, he sent me a Valentine care package that included, among other things, a cassette tape of love songs he downloaded from the Internet. One of these was “I Want to Spend My Lifetime Loving You” from The Mask of Zorro. It became one of our songs. Even now, after caring for him at home for six years when two strokes partially paralyzed him, and after I lost him three years ago, I still marvel that a man wanted to spend his lifetime loving me. To hear this song, go to https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yo4AWDELNiY . To hear me read the poem, visit https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/15213189/rise%20fal%20of%20zorro.mp3 . Happy Valentine’s Day, honey, wherever you are.

***

THE RISE AND FALL OF MY ZORRO

 

With cape, hat, mask, rapier,

he rode out of the darkness.

“Take my hand. Dance with me,” he said,

“I want to spend my lifetime loving you,”

but happily-ever-after was not to be.

My hero fell and rose many times.

I felt the glory

until he fell for the last time.

Where there’s love, life begins again.

When life dies, love goes on.

***

Abbie J. Taylor 010Author Abbie Johnson Taylor

Front Book Cover - We Shall OvercomeWe Shall Overcome

Cover: How to Build a Better Mousetrap by Abbie Johnson TaylorHow to Build a Better Mousetrap: Recollections and Reflections of a Family Caregiver

That’s Life: New and Selected Poems

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Dedication

In a year, I hope to publish my memoir, My Ideal Partner: How I Met, Married, and Cared for the Man I Loved Despite Debilitating Odds. A few weeks ago when I went to the local senior center for breakfast, I ran into Lois Bell, the community outreach director who also edits the newsletter and does other activities. A month earlier, she coordinated a fund raiser where people could purchase homemade Valentine hearts in tribute to someone they love. I bought one in honor of Bill. I meant to pick it up sooner after it was displayed in the dining room, but I forgot. On this day, she asked me if I still wanted it, and I said I did.

I hadn’t seen it before, and I was glad I didn’t look at it closely until I got home because when I saw it, tears came to my eyes. It was a red heart made of some sort of laminated paper. Pink flowers were pinned to the top corners. I’d e-mailed Lois our wedding picture which was displayed in the middle of the card. Above and below it were the words, “To Bill, my love, now, always, forever.” I can’t think of a better dedication for my memoir.

 

Abbie Johnson Taylor, Author

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