“He was my first love,” she said with a faraway look in her eyes. The silence grew, lengthened, as I waited and wondered. Her fingers played with the delicate chain she wore around her neck. I thought she’d forgotten me.
She smiled a half-smile as she finally turned to me. “That was fifty years ago. He always held a special place deep in my heart,” she paused again, quiet, reflecting, still. Reliving a past I could not fathom and dare not intrude upon even if I could.
“Our parents said we were too young,” she continued, “too young to know what love is. But we knew, we both knew. I remember … It was such a tender love, almost, well, spiritual. We were so young, but we knew what love is,” her voice trailed off once again as she re-entered that distant past and tears glinted in her eyes.
And I, a fool, did not know what to say or what to do to comfort her. I, in turn, was much too young to understand. I had no knowledge of such love. It astounded and confounded me.
I was too young at that time. But now the years have tumbled by and I am now at that age that she was then. And still, I wonder at a love held close for so long. So long. A love that never died.
“And I think to myself, it’s a wonderful world.” This ballad
written by Bob Thiele and George David Weiss was recorded by Louis Armstrong
and released in 1967. It has been one of my favorite tunes, hands down. Songs
of hope; songs celebrating life; songs that bring us back to days of our youth
(misspent or otherwise) are such a joy and a blessing.
“God gave us memories that we might have roses in December” –
author unknown. That is what music is to me and such a blessing too. And it really is such a wonderful world.
Yes, there are despotic rulers, egomaniacs and narcissistic,
power-hungry leaders who don’t seem to know the meaning behind the ideas of
good governance. Yes, there are horrible things being done to human beings
around the globe. Yes, there are terrible diseases and natural (and not so
natural) disasters. I do not deny the horrors in the world.
However, I choose to focus on the positive. The wonderful
stories of people stepping up to help others; to help animals; to help the
environment. “As within, so without,” as the saying goes.
Wherever you live on this bright blue marble and whatever
you are doing, I hope you see the good in people and in this beautiful world of
ours, and think to yourself, it’s a wonderful world.