He lit her fire and felt the radiating glow
that lay unkindled through the blunted, charcoal years,
and now, at 3 am, her eyes are closed, her frame in safe recline
while he and I discuss the coming celebration
as if we were alone.
I think that she’s asleep,
but David knows that when her name is spoken,
her lovely eyes will open, and she’ll surprise me with a dazzling smile
which, had I questions in my head, would reconcile them, every one.
She’ll rise up fast and cross the room to kiss his head,
then sleepily retrace her steps to lie back down again,
while both of us devour the sight of reclaimed beauty.
It happens every time.
This is no fickle game, no touch-and-go,
no trumped-up love to end in tears,
no dirty trick to try her luck,
no shameful scam to make a buck.
She’s gone so far beyond her ruinsome loyalty to dangerous desires,
and found a life that’s richer than a pirate’s buried chest of gems.
I watch and know she’ll never lose herself again.
I catch his eye, and it is like a sibling’s hug.
This marriage is no sacrifice, no grateful gift for what he did.
My daughter found a home in him, a home she never knew before.
I love this trying, loyal man who loves to disagree
with all the views I hold most dear,
this roughly mined black diamond who saved my child’s life.
I love our friendship, love our differences and little wars,
but most of all I love the way he loves my daughter,
and I’ll be proud to call him
This rhyme is artlessly arranged, but I won’t change a word of it. It’s the only way I know to finally share my daughter’s forthcoming marriage to Dave.
Image: My sleepy girl before she decided it was time to lie down on my sofa and go to sleep, while Dave and I watched over her, discussed wedding plans, and generally enjoyed an all-nighter.
©Jane Paterson Basil