From an Old Soldier's Home
Dear Lady of Distant and Sandy Beaches ‚Äì
I‚Äôm writing to you tonight without the benefit of my glasses, so if I don‚Äôt get the sentiment quite right, or if I become near-sighted in my approach, I hope that you will read with an open heart and a forgiving eye. I also plan to send this correspondence via carrier pigeon, and with the stiff breezes coming off the Atlantic this week, I can‚Äôt be sure that it will make it to your doorstep with the efficiency I‚Äôve come to expect from the regular U.S. Postal Service.
Provided you get this, please send a wink along the wire so that I don‚Äôt spend my Wednesday in suspense.
How are you? How is the bundle of sunshine and dynamite? At last count I think she was getting just tall enough to reach the cookie jar, a fact that you could verify from your perch in the clouds. An accomplishment that brought a smile to your lips and a flutter to your heart. The best kind of accomplishment according to the handbook we so meticulously crafted during a Memorial Day parade decades ago.
And you? You. You. You. Have you found the time and the inclination to finish the greatness in your marrow? That I have begged you to commit to ink? It was practically bleeding onto the page, and I only worried that I wouldn‚Äôt be able to get you enough band aids to catch the brilliance. You know that I can‚Äôt/won‚Äôt die until I read it for myself to see where it went after climbing into that car. I‚Äôm also quite sure that it will be the very moment that I read the end that I will, with a joyful heart, retire this body to the dirt. You might think, on first glance, that I‚Äôve adopted another of my overly theatrical personas for the sake of that last sentence, but I can assure you that it is 100% truth and if you called up God right now he‚Äôd let you know. Would corroborate my story.
Speaking of old men (even older than me, Captain Musket, 1st Regiment of the Revolutionary War) I‚Äôm headed to the old man‚Äôs house of books and food in the coming weeks, and would gladly give up anything to crash through a department store with you in search of lawn furniture, playing cards, or boxing gloves.
Well, it‚Äôs been a bit of a strain on the ol‚Äô retina and I‚Äôd ought to put on the ol‚Äô sweet dreams hat, as the hour is turning. As always, it has been nice sitting with you, even if I have to rely on memory to fill in the sweet notes of your voice.
Off to the Pigeon Farm!
Captain Musket, 1st Regiment
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