Twas the barest wee knock on the old lady’s front door.
Agatha Agnes made her way, slow, from the divan to answer.
Things this past year for her had left her tired and sore:
Bisquick Cat had been ill, while her Bob finally passed from cancer.
Peering from her peephole Agatha Agnes could just see
The head of her little girl neighbor with her new winter bonnet;
And couldn’t help but wonder what new evil this could be.
Patiently, the little neighbor held a box with a big green bow on it.
Agatha Agnes pulled slowly open her door of oaken ebony
And said to the little girl struggling with the mighty box:
“Leslie Katherine, what on earth have you brought to me!”
The little girl then blushed hot crimson from bonnet to her socks.
“Murry Chwistmus,” tried Leslie Katherine, offering up the bundle.
“Why, thank you,” answered Agatha Agnes, taking the box in hand.
Finally freed, Leslie Katherine bolted the porch skipping off in a trundle.
Agatha Agnes slowly went back inside to see about this present too grand.
Back in the divan, our old lady went to pull off the grand green bow,
Then pulled apart the plain white paper on the box, and opened the flaps:
Lifted out from the packing peanuts a large silver frame made a show—
An old black and white portrait of Agatha Agnes next to her Bob in his riding chaps!
Later Agatha Agnes would learn the story how this last Christmas present came to be:
Bob realized his cancer would soon win and wanted to surprise his bonny bride.
So, retrieving the silver frame with his old college degree inside from U of Mississippi—
He took her favorite picture of them happy and young, in love, and slid that inside.
Bob had met with the neighbors and asked Leslie Katherine for a special boon:
To present the box to Mrs. Jefferson, at her convenience, on Christmas Day.
The Cabbotts readily agreed, even though it was an early hot, summer June.
But they remembered; and after lunch, Leslie Katherine had made her careful way.
Real Love is timeless, despite those events that cause breath-catching with maybe a spilt tear.
Cherish all your loved ones, be passed or present: Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!
So took the turn
To Hudson Valley Road,
Passed an embarrassment of bluebonnets
And a mite scandal of cactus,
Trying to find my true love’s grave.
So found myself back in Kingsland
Between two hills and five sighs;
Drove beyond ‘show pigs’ and llamaland
And there found the ‘not by much’ iron gate
Of the Eternal Rest Cemetery, to
Drop off my two rose bouquet and
Sit to have a talk with Carol Bell. (She never
Much cared for her married name) but she married the other one—
With a job, and a house, and good sense to settle down with
A Texas beauty with brains enough to pick steady over party-crazy with dark eyes.
Dark Eyes eventually mostly stopped crying but here I was ten years after with nice
Store-bought flowers and tried with caught-breath to say hey.
Got back on Park Road 4 for the roller coaster ride back to civilization, sorry there were
No deer about to justify the Warning: Deer signs along the road. Phone rang…
Back to work, passing the scandal of cactus and the embarrassment of bluebonnets….