“Love never dies.”
~1 Corinthians 13:8
I sat in the rose garden at the park. It was approaching sunset and I should have been on my way home. But something called me to stay—I don’t know—an intuition? In a few minutes, a man and a woman walked slowly towards the bench next to me. They were well advanced in years. The woman helped the man sit down; he leaned his weight on her for balance. He grimaced as if he were in pain.
“What will you do when I’m gone?” the man asked the woman once they had sat down.
“Don’t you worry about that,” she hushed him. I glanced over and saw her take his hand in hers.
“We’ve hardly spent a day apart, in all of these years.” The old man was crying. I heard the woman start to cry, too.
“Hardly a day,” she agreed.
“I can’t imagine leaving you,” he whispered.
“I won’t be far behind. I’ll catch up, don’t you worry,” the woman said. I glanced over again and saw the man lean his head onto her shoulder. She reached up and touched his face so gently that it brought tears to my eyes. “I love you, Wally,” she said.
“I love you…” the man said so softly that I didn’t catch the name. I knew that I had lingered to witness the love between the two of them. I got up and wiped the tears from my eyes. As I walked home God whispered in my ear, “Love never dies.”
“I know,” I said. “Because you never die.” When I got home I sat in my own garden under the last few rays of the setting sun and gave thanks for the fifty-eight years I’ve spent on this earth and for all of the people I’ve loved. I’ll carry them with me forever.