Small Things

Small Things

Just last Wednesday I had a blowout with my wife
When all the shouting and throwing things was done
I figured I’d better get out of the house
Take a walk, I told myself
Let things cool down to a low boil

I walked slowly down the street
To the park three blocks up and three blocks over
There I bought some stale bread at the hot dog stand
Found a bench and sat down by an old man wrinkled and gray
We were quiet for a long while
Throwing bits and bites of wheat bread
To the pigeon’s that wandered by now and then

The old guy had the kind hint of a permanent smile
He seemed quite happy and very content
Got me wondering what advice he might give me
There from the twilight of his life
I said, “Old man, I’ll tell you
Life at thirty-two looks pretty damn bad
What makes you so happy
With you in your eighties
And death’s door waiting to open just down the street?”

He smiled a little more and said in a voice soft and quiet
“You know, when I was young I wanted whole lot of things
Later, I learned to want a few things a whole lot
But in the fullness of time I’ve found
That  much of what has given me
The greatest happiness in life
Can all be put into just one word.”
“And what word is that?” I asked
His eyes sparkled
As he gave a good-hearted bit of bread to a bird
“Linore,” he said

“She is my lady
Linore waits for me at home
In a little while, I’ll get up from this bench
And wander on back
I’ll probably find her in the dining room
With a calico cat on her lap
When I walk in, she’ll look up kindly and say
“Hi baby, how did it go for you today?””
Listen son, Linore is just a tiny little thing
Like me, she has gone very gray
But when I look at her I see
A half a million memories all rolled up inside
Half a million things to think about
Lingering quietly there in her turquoise eyes
They are small things
Stuff you’d hardly mention day-to-day
Things that most people never even notice
Or take for granted and cast aside
But I think about them all day long, every day

In Linore I see ten-thousand kisses
Scattered across fifty-five years
Ten-thousand times her soft hair
Has brushed up against my arm
Ten-thousand times her head has rested on my chest
Ten-thousand conversation’s
Bright or wise, idle or sad
Ten-thousand jokes and wise cracks
Adding a little happy spice and pepper
To the passing days
Ten-thousand smiles
Ten-thousand “I love you’s”
Always from the soul, always good to hear
And at the end of ten-thousand tough days
Ten-thousand cuddles in bed after the light’s went out
Ten-thousand times we have taken each other’s hand
Ten-thousand times I’ve felt her gentle embrace
Ten thousand times her face has lifted up my day
Ten thousand times I’ve looked in her eyes
And seen the bright spark that dances inside

Small things
Things you’d hardly notice
But if you weave them all together
Across the long, long years
They tell a grand tale
That is epic and eloquent and entirely uncommon
A tale written by two small souls
With two small pen’s
A story written by Linore and I
That is worth telling over and over again

Now son, you get up and go on home
And when you do, keep to the small things
Keep them handy
Keep them close by
Keep on remembering them
They are what will get you through the long years ahead
They can make your life heroic
A romance that you live every day
If you let them, they can be ten-thousand things
That together
Are so much more than just a bunch of parts

Dewey Dirks copyright 2008

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4 comments on “Small Things

  1. J Q Rose says:

    A touching poem and so true. We do take the small, everyday things for granted. Thanks for pointing out how important it is to open my eyes to the small stuff.

  2. Ricardo says:

    I Love this article….Amazing!!!

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