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温馨夜读II PART2 5.Grandpa’s Valentine

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[00:00.74]5.Grandpa’s Valentine

[00:05.97]I received a call from the nursing home.

[00:09.45]Grandpa was failing rapidly. I should come.

[00:13.60]There was nothing to do but hold his hand.

[00:16.72]“I love you, Grandpa. Thank you for always being there for me.”

[00:22.17]Memories...memories...six days a week,

[00:26.21]Grandpa in that old blue shirt caring for those cattle...on hot summer days plowing the soil,

[00:33.91]planting the corn and beans and harvesting them in the fall...always working from dawn to dusk.

[00:39.90]Survival demanded work, work, work.

[00:43.61]But on Sundays he put on his gray suit and hat.

[00:47.52]Grandma wore her wine-colored dress and ivory beads, and they went to church.

[00:53.29]Grandpa and Grandma were quiet, peaceful, unemotional people.

[00:58.19]The nurse apologized for having to ask me so soon to remove Grandpa’s things from the room.

[01:05.49]It would not take long. There wasn’t much.

[01:08.76]Then I found it in the top drawer of his nightstand.

[01:13.33]It looked like a very old handmade valentine.

[01:17.58]What must have been red paper at one time was a streaked faded pink.

[01:22.92]A piece of white paper had been glued to the center of the heart.

[01:27.49]On it, penned in Grandma’s handwriting, were these words:

[01:32.17]TO LEE FROM HARRIET

[01:35.98]With All My Love,

[01:37.94]February 14, 1895

[01:43.38]Are you alive? Real? Or are you the most beautiful dream that I have had in years?

[01:51.77]Are you an angel — or a figment of my imagination?

[01:56.12]Someone I fabricated to fill the void? To soothe the pain?

[02:01.46]Where did you find the time to listen? How could you understand?

[02:06.69]You made me laugh when my heart was crying.

[02:10.39]You took me dancing when I couldn’t take a step.

[02:14.64]You helped me set new goals when I was dying.

[02:18.45]You showed me dew drops and I had diamonds.

[02:22.80]You brought me wildflowers and I had orchids.

[02:27.71]You sang to me and angelic choirs burst forth in song.

[02:32.60]You held my hand and my whole being loved you.

[02:37.18]You gave me a ring and I belonged to you.

[02:41.10]I belonged to you and I have experienced all.

[02:45.89]Tears streamed down my cheeks as I read the words.

[02:50.80]I pictured the old couple I had always known.

[02:54.73]It’s difficult to imagine your grandparents in any other role than that.

[02:59.98]What I read was so beautiful and sacred.

[03:03.81]Grandpa had kept it all those years.

[03:06.98]Now it is framed on my dresser, a treasured part of family history.

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