cresting the small rise, i can already see her, sitting on the porch, blue mountains rising to either side as stoic companions, waiting for me to arrive. it is tuesday, our day, and her name is mary.
gravel crunches as my tires drag to stop and i unfold my body from the car with a great stretch, the air seems cleaner, more refreshing here. a gifted painter's hand is evident as each of nature's colors adds more to the next.
she is attentive to something and missed my approach, so i watch her from a distance, seeing small joys light her face; a butterfly dancing on a wildflower, a lady bug slowly crawling across the toe of her shoe. her fingers rub at the arms of her chair, the only sign of her impatience.
clearing my throat, she lifts her head, overly red lips smiling. she says nothing, she does not need to, i can see she is happy i have finally arrived once more. she takes my hand in hers, her skin like milk, soft, yet firm as if i might flit away like the butterfly. she wore a dress today, just for me.
we stroll down the hall, her showing me off in her silent way, all the way to her room, where she lays down inviting me to sit. her eyes say all she has and she listens as i spill out my life before her, telling stories she has heard before. no words part her lips, but i understand her and after a while we just sit, until her hand, on mine, gently loosens, her breathing becoming a whisper.
slipping out of the room, i smile at the others. few remember my name week to week, but they know i am mary's. some visitors may wonder why a young man would spend time with an elderly lady, that he is not even related to, but i would say we both have much to give and took away our equal portions.
nestled tight between the mountains, there is a home, many have forgotten, whose ground now holds a lady, i once knew, whose name was mary.