He Didn’t Know

He didn’t know his heart could

fill with so much gratitude that

it would spill out of his eyes.


He had been so weepy, he couldn’t

watch PBS programs about saving

orphaned baby elephants whose


mothers had been hacked to death

by poachers looking for ivory to be

made into trinkets for people to buy.


He almost gave up the ghost as he

watched one of the babies die

from separation anxiety, not from


its own mother, but from its surro-

gate human mother who left for

awhile to handle her daughter’s


wedding. He watched the once

guilt-ridden mother of humans

and elephant babies choke-up


in front of the camera forty-years

after the death, and while

he would have cried about that


situation any time, he realized

that this was about something

other than baby elephants, horren-


dous poaching and wonderful

surrogates. It was about entertain-

ing friends from grade school days


for a few days who are still friends

sixty years later, and then a week

later, entertaining other good


friends on a warm, wonderful, summer

evening and singing good, old, gospel

songs in what they thought was


four-part harmony and, while laughing,

knew was sung in respect for a

time past and a solid


foundation, while lifting glasses of French

wine and top shelf bourbon, gin and

middle shelf vodka in celebration.


Not to mention the thought of a really

great buddy on the West Coast

who is one of the finest followers


of Jesus he has ever known. Then

he thought about his wife being

invited to show her mixed


media sculptures, started from scratch

five years ago, at a very prestigious

gallery and then the reality


finally set in that he, in partnership with

his artist daughter, published a book

of his poetry and her art while


she put the whole thing together and a really

good review came in. For a little while,

he listened to a nasty, negative


voice and thought that was why he was

weepy, but, with a little help from

his wife, realized it wasn’t.


That was why he was angry for a little while.

No, he was weepy, really weepy for all

the great stuff in his life mentioned

in reverence above.

1 thought on “He Didn’t Know

  1. The power of gratitude … “count your many blessings” … and you’ve done that here, with grace … the kind of grace that says Thank You and then steps back utterly bewildered by the goodness of it all. Much pain in this world, and for that you weep … but your tears come from the deepest of all places, not wrenched by pain, but pushed upward by grace.

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