And then I saw him waving to us from behind the sky’s reflection.
We are surrounded by story.
My love for the child asleep in the crib, the child’s need for me, for my vigilance, had made my life valuable in a way that even the most abundantly offered love, my parents’, my brother’s, even Tom’s, had failed to do. Love was required of me now–to be given, not merely to be sought and returned.
As if only he and the blind man could see what the rest of them could not.
Terrible things were ahead of her: Jacob would go to Vietnam. Her father’s surgery had made him an old man. And how would she bear the empty world without her mother in it? There was college to look forward to, boyfriends, marriage, maybe children of her own, but terrible things, too, were attached to any future. What you needed, she thought, was Susan’s ability, her courage, to fix your eyes on the point at which the worst things would be over, gotten through.
Why not? Bread was what you wanted over the long haul, when you got right down to it. When you got right down to it, you wouldn’t want a lifetime of cake.
For one of us at least, we knew, we were certain – this is how we saw the world – there would never again be loneliness in life.
It might have been the first time in my life I understood what an easy bond it was, to share a neighborhood as we had done, to share a time past.
His eyes went again to the crucifix above his head, reflected in the mirror. The strained arms, the arched spine. All that effort to open the gates of heaven for us and we (he thought) probably spend out first hours among the heavenly hosts settling old scores with relatives.