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Women Who Win

The Magic of Touch
 

I sat in the garden
With an unbearable burden; With heavy eyes and
A heavy heart.
The world was in darkness deep, But what eluded me was sleep. The moonbeams rushed
Through the leaves and
Embraced me.
I have cancer.
It must be cancer only;
It can’t be anything else.
Tomorrow for a check-up.
My husband asked about my symptoms. His eyebrows went up.
He changed the flat tyre in sorrow To get the car ready for morrow. He talked about the doctor,
About the check-up.
But that wasn’t what I wanted. I wanted to hug him and cry.
I was going to die.
I trembled; he mumbled. Before I could weep
He was asleep.
He didn’t even touch me,
Nor put his arms around me.
Too busy, was he?
Not even wipe my tears. And my teenage daughter,
I thought, could have been softer.
‘What mom, looking so dull?’ That’s all, what lull.
I longed for someone to console me, To dry my eyes with a hanky,
To caress my hair,
To tell me I won’t die—
Atleast a lie.
But suddenly it struck me:
I had never done it myself !
When my husband rolled in pain
From kidney stone again,
I rang up the doctors,
Thought of all factors,
Fixed the appointment,
Rushed him to the hospital.
Why, o why, didn’t I think of
Consoling him, comforting him,
Caressing him?
When my daughter was ill
And lying by the window sill,
I sat by her bedside and
Read and wrote and worked.
I never thought of kissing her.
No wonder they were unable
To give me
What I failed
To give them.
I dried my tears
and went in with my fears.
Next day I hugged my daughter.
She burst into a surprised laughter
And leaned on my shoulder.
From my heart rolled away a boulder.
I took my husband’s hand
And laid my cheek on it.
He put his arms around me;
To kiss me bent his knee.
The ice was broken.
Hearts were shaken and warmed.
Smiles were broader.
It wasn’t anymore harder.
The check-up was over.
It turned out to be a simple thing !
But the simple thing
Did a great job!


   Address for Correspondence & Contributions:

Lilian Stanley
13 Church Colony
Vellore 632006, India
Tel: +91 9843511943
Email: lilianstanley@gmail.com

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