Monday, April 19, 2010

letter to Mr. H

Dear Mr. H,

I write to thank you. Thank you for showing me how to be a nurse, and for reminding me that life always moves in one direction forward.

Even though I could not speak Korean and you do not speak English, we got along quite well and made a very good team I think. I am glad I was there when your daughter came to visit. She is very talented—only 22 and almost finished with pharmacy school. And very beautiful too—big Asian almond eyes that seem to turn whatever it sees into gold. I know you are very proud of her, Mr. H, and even though I have only met her once, I am proud of her too. She must be the reason why you keep on fighting, a quiet, unrelenting fight. I wish I could speak Korean, so I could ask you how you’re doing it, where you get that strength from, because I would like to borrow some of it.

Mr. H, I love you. I love you very much. I love you with the love I have but did not show for my father. I hope you did not mind me constantly watching over you, even while you were sleeping, always swinging in and out of your room like a pendulum. It just felt so necessary to be a hawk, you know? Because I am now a hawk that can see.

And if it seemed like I was constantly checking your heart and listening to your lungs and feeling your pulse, I was. Because I could hold your hand and help you up like I did not do for my father. I’m sorry if I keep bringing up my father, it’s just that I have found that actions done with love are transferrable, between different bodies, different times, even different languages. Love is like a fruit carried downstream--some miles down river it will land, take root, and sprout into a new tree. It doesn't need to stay in its place of origin. This transfer was done without my knowing, really, until after it is done and I realize that time has begun to move forward again as it should (instead of backward staccatos as it has been).

The sky is bright today, Mr. H. The air is clear. Winds are warm like my children’s kisses. Life is happening, and we are all alive. We will continue to live, won’t we, and live gloriously? We will try, at least. That is my promise. I will try, and you will try with me, because your daughter is so beautiful, and you have so much love, and because you are still alive, and spring is here, and even though spring will end in a few months, it will come back again. And we’ll come back too, won’t we? Because spring always comes back and love is transferrable.

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