For my sister, Kathy...
In those young days, those long-ago,
long-since-past days, the gap of years
loomed large, a nearly-nine-year chasm
we could barely leap across and separating
us in ways both ordinary and mysterious.
And now we are no longer young.
In your still-youthful face I see reflections
of both Mom and Dad, as I do in mine,
though the features have taken on a different mien,
configured in a different shape on each of us.
The intervening years have brought
the sharing of those darker gifts
we would gladly have eschewed-
the heart-rending, life-twisting loss of first-born sons...
the body's cruel betrayal as cancer's icy touch seared its way,
unseen and, at first, unfelt...
But in the shining gifts of sister-love,
of Christmases shared and long conversations on the phone,
of laughter in the midst of pain, of chemo cuts, of precious time
to simply be together, the difference of years has faded
into nothingness, and we are simply two aging women
who share a past, a present, and, prayerfully,
a long and lovely future of sisters forevermore.