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Tuesday, 30 August 2011

Forever Glow

By Herchel Newman aka Herm

From the ballroom balcony, I saw her on the dance floor below
Who she was, I did not know
She was in the arms of a dapper gent, dancing in silk circles
till the music was spent
My eyes had not seen such a lovely. She was an angelic sight
Like the moon in the heavens, she became the glow of my night
I remained a gentleman to the date I escorted
while stealing a peek, some moments afforded
But in its time, there came the dawn
and with great regret, she was gone

I'd been asleep, or so it seemed
for I'd awakened into a brand new dream
The air was scented with a new spring perfume
and my ears were enchanted by a heavenly tune
My eyes saw color as never before
Sunrise and sunset were glazed in glory
This was the forward of a grand new story

With much wonder, I was open to see
what great mystery surrounded me
Crossing the threshold of this new day
came in a visitor I wanted to stay
Who are you? I was eager to know
He didn't answer with words, but only a glow
It came out of my eyes with tearful glee
washing away the old for new wonders to see
Joy came boiling over using my mouth as a door
I heard myself laughing, silly as never before

I loved the sensations, wondering what it could be
so I thought to ask of one much wiser than me
To whom could I go? Who just might know?
My father had lived many years
Perhaps there was a time he saw through the tears
When my inquiry was made, he pondered what he might say
A smile pushed up his cheeks
as he pointed to a chair and said
"Son, have a seat."

He told me a story of spirit and heart
I just wasn't getting it, so he forged a new start
He searched for the words to explain love to me
He never quite found them, try as he would
but it was in the unexplainable that I finally understood
It was no tranquil scene a painter could make
It was no beautiful portrait a photographer could take
It was no music a composer could pen
nor was it a song any artist could sing
There was no seed to grow such a tree
but I ate fruit from its limbs
There was no breeze to lift such a kite
but I rose on it to ever new heights
With all the impossibilities there are to explain
I'm afraid you're on your own, in the time that remains

Yes, I was young, but a young man
Strong enough to give Dad a hand
No more lazy days
I was on the job with Dad, trying to get paid
So I mixed that mud, carried that hod
for some long hard hours
When day was done, he said, "Good job son.
Let's load the truck and go home."

As my tiredness unfurled, there...
gliding down the sidewalk, I saw a girl
She had on white tennies, sweatshirt and jeans
and the way she walked? Well, it seemed, I'd seen her before
Woe! Slow down Dad, so I can see
What is it son? You startled me
I focused in as he started to slow
anxious to see the front of these Saturday clothes

I released a sigh as we cruised by
when she turned her sweet face to me
It was only askance, but I got my chance
to see a smile and a glint in her eye
I fell back in my seat, in my disbelief
of the darkness all around
Then the glow reappeared, and into my ears Dad asked
"Are you all right?"

I saw you looking at that girl. Do you know who she is?"
I heard him ask, but wanted the glow to last
so I was slow giving reply
"So, do you know who she is?" No sir, but sure wish I did
Dad, if dreams can come true, one day I'll introduce you
I looked back for a chance at one more glance
but just like before, she was no more

Who was that lady? I needed to know
Months passed by
I couldn't let her go
In my mind her face had a permanent place; so fine and so fair
When I wanted her with me, I knew she could be
I'd just close my eyes and she'd be there
I want to walk with her, talk with her, hold her hand and look in her eyes
This dream; an attainable vision or just fantastic lies?
Who is this lady driving me insane?
Lord, please bring her again? In Jesus name!

I was eighteen years old with a draft card in my wallet
There was a war in a place called Viet Nam
Enjoy this last year of high school, I told myself
before you have to face Uncle Sam

Homecoming football game was the place to be
I had a place on the fence to see, the candidates for Queen roll by
Waving from the third convertible, a beautiful girl caught my eye
Everything went into slow motion as I strained to see
It was that girl again and I was sure she was waving at me
All the girls were pretty. The prettiest court I ever saw
But the one to wear the crown, would be the fairest of them all
When the votes were all counted, the announcement came
Your Queen is Leondra Kendrick...now I knew her name.

Silver bells rang, carolers sang
Christmas had come once again
People were friendly, parties were many
I got invited to one
On the wrong side of town, not to be found
this party would not be fun
But my friend was smitten by a cute little kitten
who had his fur in a ruffle
I consented to go, hoping though
the night didn’t end in a scuffle

We drove to the house, parked and got out
walked up and knocked on the door
We were welcomed in, I followed my friend
There were people we had seen before
When we got down the stairs, he said she was there
and directly pointed her out
A girl pretty as this was worth the risk
For him there was no doubt.

I knew no one there, so did not dare
to move from my spot on the wall
I told him, take a chance, ask her to dance,
or why were we there at all
I turned away from him, the room was dim,
so I couldn't see very far
But across the way, I made out a face
from the crowd at the soft drink bar

For a moment it seemed I was back in a dream
because something started to glow.
Could it possibly be, I turned again to see
But it seemed my answer was no
I scanned the room and all too soon
I saw what I wasn't able to see
She wasn't there, because she was here
standing right next to me

My eyes were wide, my mouth was dry
I couldn't think of a thing to say
When I did, I lost my bid
She had already walked away
I felt like a fool, I'd blown my cool
Perhaps it was just best to go
It was fear saying get outta here
But my heart just kept saying no

The lights gave a flicker signaling, the party was about to end
Last dance meant last chance
This gate may never open again
The room waved like an ocean, as couples began to align
Not many girls left as the music began
So where in the crowd was mine
She was across the room and none too soon
did I see her come into view
A guy reached for her hand, asked for the dance
The seconds remaining were few

Lord, this can't be, please let her see
cause I can't get through this crowd in time
Her face turned toward me, in my eyes she did see
I longed for this dance be mine
I offered my hand and then began
to move to the middle of the floor
She met me there, so fine and so fair
I never felt this way before.

As the music played, gravity gave way
For we danced on a cushion of air
My friend, he saw from his place on the wall
All he could do was stare
He was in shock, his jaw did drop
He didn't know what to say
When he did, he mouthed, "Do you know who she is?"
I winked and twirled away

We introduced ourselves even though we knew each other's name
When she stood by me, it was so her friend could see
the guy she had singled out
Later, she would say, when she looked my way
Her prayer was the same as mine
Lord, let him see and dance with me
before we run out of time
The song wasn't long. The lights came on
And it was time to go home
We laughed at our confessions as we followed the procession
on the way to the door
We didn't know when we could do this again
but knew there had to be more
This was no coincident, this meeting was heaven sent
The glow had gotten brighter, the load of wondering lighter
The dream was overcast. This was reality
She was here at last

It was fate. We started to date. Each family we did meet
It went well. We could tell by each time we would greet
It was fun when I told Dad she was the one
we cruised by that day on the avenue
He filled with joy, proud of his boy
happy that his dream had come true

The earth traveled around the sun
And it was June where we'd begun
Soon we'd be graduates, off to face the world
But first the prom to dance with my girl
It was held at that most popular place
She was beautiful and full of grace
Like a gold bracelet with a ruby charm
I was proud to have her on my arm.

The music played a joyful love song
Couples walked to the floor
Hand in hand we joined them
Anxious to dance once more
I couldn't resist looking above
To where I stood last year falling in love
There was a guy looking, trying to see
I recognized him right off
The guy was me
We spun a pattern of silk circles light on our feet
I was the dapper gent
And the Queen was dancing with me
We ate fruit from the limbs
Sang the songs again and again
We rode the breeze like a kite
and talked long into the night
From that point on, nothing could separate us
Love, fused us through and through
Then I received a letter
It read Greetings
Uncle Sam needs you

It wasn't long till I was gone
marching in the hot Texas sun
They shaved my head
I made my bed
Hope you liked this
I'm done.

[INVITATION: All elders, 50 and older, are welcome to submit stories for this blog. They can be fiction, non-fiction, poetry, memoir, etc. Instructions for submitting are here.]

Posted by Ronni Bennett at 05:30 AM | Permalink | Email this post


Your story-poem is fantastic, Herm! And then what....???


You should just print this, put it in an envelope,and give it to Sweet Lonnie.

What a Valentine this is to her......

Just DeLightful!!!! My day is off to a good start to read this!!!
Thank you

Loved every word, every paragraph..if there is anything as wonderful as those young crushes, I've never heard or read of them...you have the gift...thanks for the breathless voyeurism of dancing along...

I wrote and presented this at a formal Valentine's dinner party last year. Nancy, Sweet Lonnie, blushed the whole time. Once I saw how long it was going to be, the challenge was to keep the reader interested and at the end wanting more.

Kathleen, after 42 years of marriage the glow is still bright. I have many Sweet Lonnie stories. It's a book unto itself.

I wanted to share it here, but knew it may be too long. Your uplifting and encouraging comments make me glad I tried. Ronni, was sweet and kind to post it.

Glad it was a deLight to your day, Linda. Mary, glad you joined the dance. I thought that was you out on the floor.

Loving you all,

Herm, I am no good at poetry but I appreciate those, like you, who are.


Your beautiful words reminded me of a famous poem with the same theme.

Please read "That Old Sweetheart Of Mine" by James Whitcomb Riley...You and Lonnie will love it and you will think it was written just for you two.

For I find an extra flavor
in Memory's mellow wine
That makes me drink the deeper
to that old sweetheart of mine.

My story had a flavor and a rhyme. This was true poetry. Nancy, thanks for sharing this. I'll rehearse it and share with Sweet Lonnie. This has been a good day for me.


You are so fortunate to have found your soul mate whom you obviously still love.

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