On the Eve of Our 27th Wedding Anniversary
Earlier today we looked at each other
and kind of shrugged. What do you want to do?
I don’t know. How about you?
Should we get a sitter and go out or should
we do a special thing as a family?
Let’s do the special thing as a family.
Yeah, that would be better. So, what should we do?
Still partially undecided,
our 27th wedding anniversary plans
will wait until tomorrow to solidify.
She’s putting the boy to bed
and I’m drinking a bourbon in the backyard
thinking about the solidity of a marriage.
Events or circumstances have at times
conspired against it, storms came through.
There were blissful days and torturous ones
and sometimes those days, both blissful and torturous,
turned into months,
once or twice they became years.
Our marriage, tank-like, a fortress,
has withstood it all, and we are practically
the only living couple I know who have lasted as long.
I’m not bragging. We were and remain lucky and committed.
We live on a property covered with these majestic,
ancient oak trees and when the weather is bad
sometimes large limbs fall into the yard, the driveway,
impale themselves into the soft winter dirt, but
yesterday, one fell, on a perfect summer day,
directly across the drive. They call them widow-makers,
and for good reason, because if I had been under it,
even if sheltered inside a car, I think I would right now
be a dead husband and my wife would be a widow.
We know we need to talk to a tree person.
What I’m trying to say is this (there’s a metaphor
at work here so bear with me):
It’s us against the oaks. They’re going to try to outlive us
like they will outlive all the other tenants of this place,
and they might succeed. They may also try to kill one of us.
But we’re going to talk to a tree person and between now
and the time when we can afford to have the work done
we’ll be on our guard against heavy falling branches.
And despite the fact that neither one of us has huge plans
for the big day tomorrow, we know something good will happen,
as we know there will many more anniversaries,
some with really important even numbers
attached to them, some for which we will throw
huge parties, probably all the way until
the year we die or one of us is killed by a falling limb.