Saturday, April 26, 2014

On the Occasion of Our Third Anniversary

Dearest Bob:

I'm sitting at the edge of the Boeing plant airfield, bundled into one of your old Pendleton plaid wool shirts against a typical blustery Seattle spring day. You'd no doubt laugh watching me try to scribble in this diary with one hand while I tug at my flowered scarf (you remember, the one you gave me back in college) with the other. I fear both the scarf and I are the worse for wear these days, but it's all for the war effort.

As strange as it seems, writing as though I were actually sending you a letter keeps the hope that you are somehow still alive burning in my heart. It's just a tiny ember, like one of those specks of golden light that used to spiral up from the gray late-night ashes of our summer campfires.

Alas, most of the fire in my life now comes from the destruction that I have a tiny part in creating. Of course it's all meant to end the war as soon as possible, but it's painful to read each day of the hellish infernos our Flying Fortresses are making of Europe's ancient cities. In return, the bombers and their crews are tumbling from the sky at such a rate I often wonder as I'm working how many weeks each immense, complex machine I labor on will last once it rolls out the hangar door.

Goodness, this talk is hardly a fit subject for an anniversary letter! I should dwell on the more cheerful things you'd no doubt want to hear of wherever you are. The rhododendrons are blooming in huge balls of pink and white blossoms. The first swallows are back, bounding through the air on warm afternoons. Stormy is shedding her winter coat, much to my consternation on laundry day. She sends you a hearty meow!

Well, I must return to the factory. The next round of Fortresses is warming up on the tarmac. Soon they'll be off into the big white clouds that punch like fists into the blue April sky. I remind myself that you are somewhere under the same sky, looking at the same sun and the same moon that shine down on Seattle. I believe with all my heart that we'll someday be looking at them together.

Your loving wife, Rosie.

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