I remember, now. I stood, one day, waiting.

    That gathered group of friends waited, too.

We waited for the mothers to take their seats,

    And then, for bride’s maids to slowly walk,

    Holding flowers,
    Holding their heads, just so,
    Looking lovely,
    Keeping perfect cadence, just as they had rehearsed.

People whispered among themselves, too.
    As I stood, that day, waiting,
    I watched them, leaning over and noticing.
    They noticed how beautiful the ferns looked in the front of the church.
    They noticed how cute the flower girl was dressed, and how the ring bearer held his                
        pillowed treasure.

And they noticed me.
I could tell, as I read their whispering lips.
They saw my nervous and terrified visage, 
    As they smiled,
    As they whispered,
    As they…waited.

And then, the music changed.

And all our wait was over.
It was time.

Here comes the bride.
    And the people stood.
    As, indeed, they should.
    Those doors swung open.
    And SHE entered.

Regal is what she was.
And she captured me.

I saw her, backlit by stained glass windows.
    A shadowed outline of my wife-to-be,
    Slowly marching down a one-way aisle.
    No turning back.
    No turning aside.

Fearlessly, she faced forward, on her father’s strong arm,
    Toward that altar,
    Toward those vows,

    Toward that ‘me.’

We meant it, when we met, there.

I still remember:
The promises we exchanged.
The Holy Communion we shared.
That kiss, that embrace, as two-become-one.

And then, that turn…to see all of ‘them.’

The announcement.
The pronouncement.

Husband and wife, “til death do us part.’
Words that changed us,…forever.

On this anniversary,
On the occasion of our being married for a long time,
I salute my wife, and join in the sentiment of the wisest man who ever lived:

“A wife of noble character…is worth far more than rubies. Her husband has full confidence in her, and lacks nothing of value.” (Prov. 31:10,11)

(For my Randee, on the occasion of our 47th anniversary.)

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