Life's last moments
Blink of an eye
"She heard a swift uptake of breath, a soft sigh and then he was gone.
It had been a long struggle. And the five year battle had aged him. His hair was now streaked with deep lines of grey, the lines below his eyes were crinklier, the hollow in his cheeks deeper. And the once rakish black goatee was now almost pure white.
It had been almost five decades when she had invited him to come to a play based on Che Guevara. The journey back from the theater in his ramshackle car, held together with handkerchiefs and wire, had taken four hours and from it had sprung her lifelong romance. She had loved his passion and his commitment and even though she was aware of the problems she would face with his conservative family, she had not hesitated when he had proposed a few months later. But the estrangement from his family had knocked something akilter in his ideal universe and there was a undertow of sorrow from then on. He never did show his hurt but it was there and she could sense its depth and pain.
But then children had come and all changed. He doted on them and his life from then on consisted of family and work. The passion for work still remained - and was to remain for all of time to come- but now it was softened with his great love for his children.
She recalled their adventures around the world- from the green valleys of Bali to the rain sodden plateaus of Dalat, from the silver village of Mexico to the beaches of Nice, from wine country of Provenance to the lush landscape of Hawaii. She had met princes and prime ministers, singers and ballet dancers, child prodigies and destitute orphans. She had dined at the finest restaurants in the world, seen the latest plays in London. They had packed in a lot in their lives.
Yes, they had had a good life, she reflected, full of joy and happiness, of creativity and wonder.
And then she gently- oh so gently-bent over and closed his eyelids.