Her hand trembled just a little
Her aging withered hand,
What it held so valuable
Few folks would understand.

A tarnished frame - a faded photo
Too light in weight to measure,
Yet almost too heavy for that hand
Which held it like a treasure.

She couldn't see the picture well
Her eyes had dimmed a lot,
But she knew the frame by feel
And it gave her pleasant thoughts.

Oh, she s'posed the frame should go
Perhaps time to be replaced,
Yet it was a gift from him
And it still held his handsome face.

The frame now older than he was
When they sent him off to war,
And the photo now much older too,
Than he ever was before.

She wished she could see it better
Though she knew it well by heart
Not a furrow in his forehead
Not a wrinkle - not a mark.

Well, she had enough for both of them
She smiled through her tears
Would he love her, if he saw her now
After all these many years?

Every wrinkle - every crinkle,
Every crease and every line
Respectable, honest medals,
Merited and earned through time.

Blue veined, thin skinned - such fragile cover,
Translucent too, he'd see inside,
And love her just as much or more,
As the day she was his bride.

No, she'd hang on to that old frame,
She raised it slowly to her lips,
Though tarnished, stained, and smudged,
She gave it a gentle kiss.

Virginia (Ginny) Ellis ~ May 2003

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