Wednesday, November 17, 2010


"I just have to have them."
           Ruth Lay (practically 3)


One day, a long time ago, when Ruth was still not quite three, I walked outside and found her sitting on our old broken glider. She used her foot to gently kick the green two-seater back and forth as she looked out to the backyard, the birds...the horizon. Her face lit up as I sat down beside her and she quickly crawled onto my lap. We rocked, her head on my chest, as I sang a song made just for that moment.

Eventually the sun warmed us from our skin to our bones and, even though I kept singing, my eyes began to close. That's when she said it. That's when Ruth reached towards the sky and said, "Mom, I can't do it. I can't reach the clouds." She frowned, scrunched up her forehead, and shrugged. "They must be really far away."

I remember looking at her and wishing I could be just like her - willing to reach for those clouds even though they seemed so far away because, you know, she kept reaching for 'em...kept trying to touch them.

And now, a letter to my friend. I miss you.

Wednesday, November 17

Ruth tried to touch
the clouds today.

(I tried to touch you.)

The clouds don’t come closer
even as she stands
on the tips of her toes,
with her arms out-stretched,
fingers –dipping-
into the cerulean

They’re just
-too far-

You don’t come closer
even though
I whisper your name,
talk to you, tell you things
Close my eyes…
try to picture you


I need you,

you’re just
-too far-

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