Tuesday, September 16, 2008

The Gentle Ferocity of Love

The elderly couple came tentatively into the waiting room of the doctor’s office where I sat. Both were white haired. Both were frail looking, though she, the more frail of the two, leaned a bit unsteadily into the arm of her mate. He fussed with getting her seated and letting the receptionist know that they were there.

I saw the look of concern etched so clearly on his face, as he continued to fuss around her until she took his hand into her own and patted it softly. I watched the look that passed between the two of them, feeling as if I had somehow invaded their privacy yet unable to pull my gaze away, drawn in by the gentle ferocity of love that passed between them.

I saw that same look this past Saturday, with a younger cast of characters, as I witnessed the marriage of my eldest stepson and his new bride. Though this time the look included the exuberant dash of youthful joy, it was, nonetheless. the same gentle ferocity of love that I had viewed so many years ago in that doctor’s office. It was beautiful and breathtaking to behold.

Erin, my new daughter, had her heart set on being married beneath the trees on her grandmother’s farm.

The weather, which had been withholding rain for weeks, suddenly decided that this weekend it was time to let loose. It rained on Friday and it rained on Saturday. A call from my stepson, told us that they were moving the ceremony to the reception hall, but because Erin still hoped to say her vows on the farm, the wedding party and a few close friends were going to meet there.

Sure enough, the rain stopped. Erin and Matt were married just as they had wanted to be - on her grandmother’s farm.

I don’t know what kind of journey awaits them. I hope that life is kind to them. I hope that when their hair is white and their gate is slow, their love is still beautiful and breathtaking to behold.

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