Do you remember when we tried to work out
how old you were by counting the years?
They refused to add up to
the number you had in your head.

The one in the hospital when you asked for clothing
because you had none, the ones you came in destroyed;
you owned nothing, not the thin striped gown your back.
Your father helped you get into your new set of clothes.

The one when we had the funeral, and you didn’t show up
because you didn’t know yet that she had died.

The one when we went to the Gower,
and the sand was golden,
and the sea was blue, the waves topped with
whipped white birthday cake frosting.

The sun is shining today.
I hope you’re happy.

About Rosalind C Hughes

Rosalind C Hughes is a priest and author living near the shores of Lake Erie. After growing up in England and Wales, and living briefly in Singapore, she is now settled in Ohio. She serves an Episcopal church just outside Cleveland. Rosalind is the author of A Family Like Mine: Biblical Stories of Love, Loss, and Longing , and Whom Shall I Fear? Urgent Questions for Christians in an Age of Violence, both from Upper Room Books. She loves the lake, misses the ocean, and is finally coming to terms with snow.
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2 Responses to Birthdays

  1. This is really beautiful. When I finished reading, I started tearing up. Well done. 🙂

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