© R. Malcolm Brown, Jr.

"I love you, honey"

These were the words from Gerald

Abuse in old age

Had failed to stifle

His understanding of love

His ultimate love

Now Gerald is old

He has lost most of his strength

Yet through all the pain

Gerald still can love

With those twinkling, big blue eyes

He still can utter

"I love you, honey"

Toward the end of his life

The last words of love

Mean so much to him

fifty nine years of marriage

To his wife, Maxine

All are now fulfilled

They are together at last

"I love you, honey"

June 2, 1994

This poem is dedicated to my uncle Gerald B. Steele who, at the time of this writing, is 84 years old. He and his wife, Maxine, had a tumultuous years, starting with Maxine's cancer surgeries, breaking her leg. Gerald was held in something akin to "house arrest", until the author was able to legally free him so that he could join his wife. Throughout this endurance, Gerald always managed to smile at the author and tell him "I love you, honey". These are the last but perhaps most important words he knows. Thus it is befitting to dedicated this poem to Gerald who so bravely, unbeknown to him, has weathered the difficulties of his life. He is "free at last" to be with his wife, Maxine, in their final days. All is well with Gerald's soul.