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Suzanne Reynolds

SHE WAS BEAUTIFUL....

.... but she didn't know what that meant.
When she was a little girl
they told her she was beautiful
but it had no meaning
in her world of bicycles
and pigtails
and adventures in make-believe.
Later, she hoped she was beautiful
as boys started taking notice
of her friends
and phones rang for
Saturday night dates.
She felt beautiful on her wedding day,
hopeful with her
new life partner by her side
but, later,
when her children called
her beautiful,
she was often exhausted,
her hair messily tied back,
no make up,
wide in the waist
where it used to be narrow;
she just couldn't take it in.
Over the years, as she tried,
in fits and starts,
to look beautiful,
she found other things
to take priority,
like bills
and meals,
as she and her life partner
worked hard
to make a family,
to make ends meet,
to make children into adults,
to make a life.
Now,
she sat.
Alone.
Her children grown,
her partner flown,
and she couldn't remember
the last time
she was called beautiful.
But she was.
It was in every line on her face,
in the strength of her arthritic hands,
the ampleness that had
a million hugs imprinted
on its very skin,
and in the jiggly thighs and
thickened ankles
that had run her race for her.
She had lived her life with a loving
and generous heart,
had wrapped her arms
around so many to
to give them comfort and peace.
Her ears had
heard both terrible news
and lovely songs,
and her eyes
had brimmed with,
oh, so many tears,
they were now bright
even as they dimmed.
She had lived and she was.
And because she was,
she was made beautiful.

Suzanne Reynolds

Model: Marit Rannveig Haslestad

 

 

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