General News · 18th March 2020
I did not know his name, but I liked the way he looked and seemed. He had a long beard and gentle eyes, and I would see him about town, by the roadside, at the ferry, the store parking lot, walking around slowly, taking it all in. One afternoon I saw him at the takeout under the awning having something to eat and using his laptop to check his mail, perhaps.
But most of all I remember the day he crossed the road holding a flower, a beautiful single stem of pink sweet pea. He held it in front of him like a flag, bearing it as if it contained all the wonder and strength in the world, the ability to heal. “Smell this”, he said, and we both inhaled its deep scent; like a miracle held among its tender petals the scent brought forward all the summers of years past and the promise of goodness to come. He gave it to me there, standing in the middle of the road, and said, “Enjoy!”. I brought it home, and I did.
Today, I read his obituary and learned his name. In my mind, Gordon and the sweet pea will forever be entwined, and I wish them both a never-ending summer.