Eternal Gift of Love
by Darla Cady

Touched by morning sun
In the gentle dawn of spring,
I think of you, and smile.
Bright memories wrapped in golden ribbons,
Warm my heart with countless candles,
Reflections of your life, in me.
Dreams of shining castles, and
Reunion's sweet embrace
Carry me through time on angel wings.
But I celebrate the glorious joy of today, and
Treasure its many gracious gifts,
Lessons beautifully engraved on my heart
In your handwriting,
Your eternal gift of love to me.
This year you have received
The greatest of all presents
In the presence of the King.
The same gentle, strong, scarred hand holds yours, and mine.
A mere lifetime could never keep us apart.
Your life forever sparkles
In the sacred brilliance of eternity.

Written in memory of my mother, Kathleen M. Westfall, on her birthday, one year after her death.


Cleaning Out My Mom's Apartment After Her Death
by Darla Cady

Cow figurines mourn with
Uneaten blueberry bagels, as
Half a pack of menthols
Weeps into
Gardenia scented potpourri
The same sad, sweet fragrance as the
Shower gel and lotion
She brought me… in the hospital
When my baby died.
I see my name
In her handwriting
A note on the table
Reminds her of a movie to
recommend to me
Her little frog, Dwight
Still swims with neons
In the aquarium she decorated for Christmas
With a tiny ceramic tree.
Square of missing carpet
Screams silently
Circumstantial evidence
Casually collected
By cold and fumbling gloves
Alone…I dig through boxes
clippings and copies of poems
some of them mine
chubby baby pictures
some of them, me
Far Side cartoons,
recipe books, and
records of southern fried rock
I thaw some chili from the freezer
to eat her cooking one last time
my brother thinks it’s creepy
I find it comforting.
I will keep the treasure…
the valuables…
Letters…photos…the note with my name
My brother can have the rest…
TV, stereo, VCR, furniture
Everything else…
But I will always have her eyes.


Author Biography
Darla Cady is a freelance writer living in Jefferson City, MO with her husband, Mike, two children, Michael and Melody, and two lab/collie mix daughters, Ginger and Rose.

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