“Pop, hold on to me.” The son said with a smile as he opened the passenger side door…and I was instantly transported to a time 24 years before.


Our son, Bryan, was getting his drivers license and in front of us as we stood in line abreast…stood an older man with his father…who was taking the vision test.


The old man put his head in the machine…but something went awry…when asked to read the top line…”I can’t!” was his reply


“Let me try again.” The old man insisted. “Which line did you say?”

The screener answered, “the top line” then the old man stepped away


He looked at his son next to him…then angrily back at the screen…

“I’m not sure,” he said to his son, “but I think there’s something wrong with this machine.”


“Miss,” he asked the lady who had let out a cynical yawn, “this machine you’re using for my test…are you sure the darn things on?”


“I’m sure.” The lady replied…her voice was low and grating…

“Read the top line please.” She repeated, “there are many people waiting.”


In a voice that seemed so unkind…as if she was provoked…

She said, “If you cannot read the first line, sir, your license is revoked.”


The old man pushed his head back in to the machine then cried out, “This can’t be!” as he unsuccessfully tried to read a line he could not see.


Next he took a step back…he looked old and frail and weak…but he stood up tall, straightened his clothes and brushed a tear from off his cheek.


“Don’t worry, Pop.” His son said. “This is nothing we can’t survive…after all the years you drove me around…think of this as my turn to drive.”


“Pop, hold on to me.” He said as they slowly waked out the door. “I’ll drive you home the same way you drove me home before.”


The memory of that day will always be special to me…not just because Bryan passed his test…but it was also the day I saw in a son’s love…a father truly blessed.

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I imagine when we look into our hearts…when we probe the corners of our soul…we’ll find moment in our life…over which we have no control.


Moments that help shape the person we daily come to be…moments left entirely in the hands of destiny.


For all those skeptics out there who totally disagree….remember…we didn’t choose to be born…we didn’t choose our family.


Although we are, in part, influenced by our fate…our destiny…we also get to make choices as to the kind of person we want to be.


If we’re free to make these kind of choices…these choices I’m thinking of…then I hope it is my destiny that I shall always be choosing love.


Yes, if I’m free to choose the kind of person who I want to be…then I choose love and kindness…love and compassion…love and generosity.


I choose love and happiness…love and acceptance…love for all the beauty surrounding me…I choose love fore every creature on Earth…love for our one big family.


I may not control ever aspect of my life but at least I can take pride…knowing destiny is a lot easier to handle…when love is by my side.

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Some people say there are no simple love stories…

and plainly they have stated…

if it’s simple it must not be love

for love is complicated…


They sight example after example

and believe this with all certainty!

But there are others who look at love 

and beg to disagree.


For them, love is simple..

It’s when they realize they’re no longer alone…

and when someone else’s happiness

is more important than their own…


For they know love is easy

and plainly have they stated

the best love is a simple love

and need not be complicated…


For they have known love in their lives

by love they have been blessed…

and they know when it comes to love stories

oftentimes…the simplest…are the best.


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Love is always changing…growing…it comes in many shapes and sizes

It can bewilder…it can excite…it’s full of wonder and surprises.


It is associated with our hopes, our dreams, our wishes and our needs

and is inextricably linked…with are ability to read…


When we are children…we learn to read the faces of our loved ones…who we see…our parents…our brothers and sisters…members of our family.


When we move away from our family…into the world outside our door…we learn to read love in many different languages…than we ever thought before.


Still a little older yet…we find love can be confusing…and often difficult to read…it can make us happy causing us to smile…or sad causing us to bleed.


We spend many of our adult years seeing how life and love are intertwined

understanding a lot of our time in love is spent trying to read between the lines.


But love softens and illuminates when we’re older…

we begin to cherish it more as art…

for now we are able to sit together 

in silence…

and read each other’s heart.



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He marvels at her child-like innocence that, not once, in their 33 years together has waned…he loves how she is impulsive, spontaneous…so easily delighted… while he’s a little more restrained.


When they share a sunrise or sunset…she can’t control her excitement…as if the sun, off her soul, is reflecting…he’s a little more reserved…as if the sun’s beams he’s collecting.


When they hear birds welcoming in the morning as sun replaces moon…she happily sings along while he, quietly smiling, listens to the tune.


When sorrow enters their life…when faced with sadness or dismay…he’s amazed at how easily she can cry…she at how gently he wipes her tears away.


When he’s asked…what is their secret…how has their bond lasted so long…how have they persevered for 33 years…what’s made their love so strong.


He says, “the answer is in how differently we see the world as together we travel through it…not necessarily in what we’re seeing…but more in how we view it”.


“When you discover beauty in the world,” he says, “at whatever beauty you happen to be glancing…if you share the different ways you see it…that beauty you’re enhancing.”


We’ve been blessed to enhance each other’s beauty

by the different ways we see…

as she sees all the artistry within the world

and I see its poetry.”

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There is a magic that, if we’re blessed, throughout our life persists…

a phenomenon that can’t be explained by philosophers or scientists.


It’s been around long before we were born and will be around long after we are through…it’s something you might find hard to believe…until it happens to you.


It can only occur naturally…it can’t be manufactured…or bought…and only after you’ve experienced it does it become easier to spot.


You can see it in your family and friends with just the naked eye…it is particularly easy to spot in older couples walking by.


Since, once experienced it becomes easier to see…

I wonder…if Charles Darwin knew of its origin…or Isaac Newton its gravity.


Surely something this fascinating begs for the expertise…of Plato…

his mentor Aristotle…

or his student, Socrates.


And what is this phenomenon whose praises have long been sung?

It’s the fact that even as our bodies grow old…the love inside us stays young.


That, even as we age and our actions and reflexes are slowing,…the love we first experienced long ago in our hearts and minds…keeps growing.


It is a fact we all will die…to think differently is a fools endeavor…

but love…once it’s touched us and touched another…will live on…forever.


Love has a way of defying time and space…of gravity…of origin and causation…

of never being fully understood…of eluding explanation.


And I, for one, having experienced it…

feeling its wonder every day…

am not only glad it is so mysterious…

but wouldn’t have it any other way.

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Dear Grandpa,


Mommy said you went to heaven…she said it’s not like going to the store…she said, once you go to heaven…we won’t be seeing you no more.


She said whenever I am sad and missing you…there is something I can do…she said to send my thoughts to heaven and they’ll find their way to you.


She said I should write you a letter and my sadness will recede…besides she said you know your grandpa…and how much he likes to read.


She said to do the best I can for she knows I’m just a boy…she said not to write about how sad I am…but to write about our joy.


I remember all those books you’d read to me…my favorite was the dancing giraffe…I remember all those jokes you’d tell…all those times you made me laugh.


I remember watching TV in your arms…falling asleep before the show was through…I remember waking up to find…you were sleeping too.


I remember throwing airplanes in the park…watching them soar so high…I remember when you’d pick me up..and together we would fly.


Hey, you know Mom was right…she said if sat down and wrote you a letter

that I wouldn’t be as sad…that it would make me feel better.


But I’m a little tired now…I hope you understand

If I bring this letter to a close…because all this writing hurts my hand…


But do not worry Grandpa…I’ll send you letters day and night…

because I have a lot more paper…and so much more to write.


So good night Grandpa…I hope this letter finds you happy…

when it finds you in the sky….

Mom said I should say good night…

and never say goodbye.

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“Grandpa...what is love?” His grandson asked with wonderment in her eyes.

“You ask a question with many answers.” His Grandpa said. “Let me try and clarify.”


“Love is like the moon.” he said.”It softly enchants our gazes…Its light is strong…its light is infinite…yet…it goes through many stages.”


“Love is like the sun...ablaze and fiery hot…It can be loud and bright and in many ways it is everything the moon is not.”


“Love is like the wind…invisible and sweet…it can enter like a summer breeze…or knock you off your feet.”


“Love is like a tree...it’s beauty…heaven-made…It supplies us with the air we breathe,

and the comfort of its shade.”


“When the leaves begin to fall as the autumn winds begin to blow…trees remind us…part of love…is also letting go.


“Love is like the ocean…it constantly flows upon our shore…and no matter how much water it contains…there is always room for more.


“Love is like this flower…its beauty and aroma can fill a room…and like a flower love needs love if it is ever going to bloom.”


When he paused to think about all he’d said…all the words he’d been combining…he wasn’t sure his grandson understood all the love he was defining.


“But as complicated as love can be…” he smiled, “it can be simple too…as simple as how my heart beats faster whenever I’m with you.


This said…his grandson’s face lit up…then he took his grandpa’s hand…both glad that Grandpa found the words to make his grandson understand.



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My thinking has changed over the years…as it has with people throughout the ages…sometimes I think our minds are like butterflies…our thinking grows in stages.


When you think about it…physically…we change a little every day…just look in the mirror…you can tell…so doesn’t it make perfect sense…our thinking would change as well?


Take love for instance…how beautiful is love…for there’s no greater gift I do believe…than love…as wonderful to give…as it is wonderful to receive.


When I was younger…in my cocoon…still learning to find my way in a life so new…my vision of the world was limited…my vision of love was too.


I didn’t understand, yet, how love is truly a work of art…how it’s easier to see love when I close my eyes…and open up my heart.


I didn’t understand, then, how we were all created to love…to love ourselves and other people too…how it only matters that we love…it doesn’t matter who.


Now when I see people in love…any people…any size, any color, sex, shape or age…I smile knowing like a butterfly…my metamorphosis of love is in it’s final stage.


The stage where everything I’ve learned…comes together and converges…

so when the butterfly comes out of his cocoon…with him…love emerges



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