Thursday, February 3, 2011

Elegy for George

I remember
the first time you walked in:

You stood in the doorway
of Nilgiris,
said a few gracious words,
firmly laid down the law,
and you walked

I was ready for you
the next time
and the next and the next and the next

Blue eyes
invariably sparkling,
a smile a hug:
"Hi, KARyn!"

(How I loved watching
your and Andy's profiles
the news the weather the day ...)

I remember

The first time you brought
your beautiful Di for dinner

The first time you called
from Hawaii for New Year

The first time you and I sat
at the table called the Island
(because no man truly is)
on a quiet Tuesday afternoon
and started to become friends

The plates you would bring
for takeout meals
so Di could eat from
her own wedding china

The World Book set
"Because every tea house
needs a good encyclopedia"

The first, all-important, question
every single time you came over
for Sunday dinner:
"KARyn, what will I have for dessert?"

How you listened
How you laughed
How you teased
How you shared
How you encouraged

I was ready for all of it

But I wasn't ready
for the phone call on Sunday
"He's not going to get better"
or the one yesterday
"He's gone"

And I wasn't ready
for this keening
in my heart
as I recalled

The last Thanksgiving dinner
with your family
(such happiness around the table!)

The last time you requested
chicken noodle soup and
pumpkin pie

The last Sunday you phoned me:
"Hi, KARyn, it's George -
What's for dinner?"

The last time you were here
still smiling but
how tired
the sparkle
a little less bright

I wasn't ready

for the gentlest winter sky
pierced with the blue
of your eyes
as I drove home

And I'm not ready
to believe

that you will never
stand in the doorway
of Nilgiris 
lighting the place up
with your hard-won


  1. And now the world has a little less of what it really needs.

  2. i'm so sorry, karyn. praying for you as you grieve this loss. your love for so many is so deep and so beautiful.

  3. Kar just a beautiful tribute to this man and the memories you will never forget.

  4. What a beautiful elegy for your friend.
    Peace and Love, sweet K.

  5. With deep sympathy and love. God knows the heart and all that is true remains. Love never fails.

  6. Thinking of you Karyn. No one knows what God does in the night.


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