March 2013

the midnight phone call

You wake and listen in the darkness. Was that the ring of the telephone?
Another ring. Yes it was.
Oh dear.
You flip back the covers and tread carefully through the living room and into the kitchen, only moonlight to guide you, struggling to keep dread from your heart.
You lift the receiver and get out a tentative “hello?”
“Hi, Mom”…warm, loving, at ease…but still, you have to ask…
“Are you alright?”
“Fine…very fine…I was reading this book…and followed a train of thought”
Your heart begins to relax.
“And I was thinking about all of those times, when I was young…when you would read to us…and make us go out in the fields for nature study…and…just all those times. I’m sure that I rebelled against them alot, in the moment…and I’m sure I’ve never thanked you enough for them…but…they were really wonderful days….and…I love you so much.”
You find that you are sitting, telephone cradled close, taking in every word, oblivious to the dark and cold around you…your heart so warmed and astonished.
You know you will break the spell by speaking, but it is your turn, so you murmur…lovingly…
“Well…that was certainly worth getting out of bed for, sweetheart.”
He laughs softly…”I hoped it would be.”
And then…
“Well, I am going to get back to reading now.”
A few more sweet nothings (sweet everythings) are exchanged. You gently place the receiver down and pad softly, lightly, back to bed. You tremble while the first shiver of cold bedclothes dissipates…and stare off into the now-friendly darkness….pictures of light-dappled meadows and boyos on quilts and the old copy of Heidi vye with hazier pictures of him in the room you’ve never seen…returning to his Game of Thrones book…
And you hope, fervently, that he is feeling as warm and loved as you are…as he returns to his reading and you to your sleep…but you are at least grateful to know where he is and what he is doing at that very moment…for once…
Then you let sleep claim you, while your now-closed eyes are filled with those sun-warmed scenes and your ears with his love-steeped tones…