Ethel and Bernie

“Where’s Henry?” she murmurs,

Her wrinkled eyelids, taut over closed eyes

He just smiles and clasps her hand firmer

“He’s in France, you know,” she wistfully sighs,


“Fighting in the war.”

Dry, thin lips curl at the illusion

He stood, his rickety knees groaning, and hobbled out the door

She watched him leave, eyes glazed with confusion.


Love me tender,
Love me sweet,
Never let me go.
You have made my life complete,
And I love you so.


Her lilting voice swirled down the hall,

Tugging his lips into a grin

He tilted his head and listened; enthralled

She swayed in front of the mirror, her thin fingers touching her wrinkled skin.


“What happened to me Bernie? Why am I old?”

Her wispy white hair curling around her dainty hand

In the reflection she studied him with stormy eyes flecked gold

“That’s the song my husband sang when he presented me the golden wedding band”.


The old man sniffed, raking a hand through his hair

A tear absorbed in his crumpled, dry face

A wistful smile graces his lips, tinged with a veiled despair

He grasped her hand and led her to bed, decorated with flowers and lace.


“Sweet dreams, darling Ellie”

He murmured with a kiss,

Her eyes were glazed, as she stared at the telly

Her mouth flicked up, glinting with bliss.

The End

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