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Thursday, April 2, 2009


I use to frequent antique stores, where invariably a kindly shop owner would ask if there was a specific item I was looking for. A gentle shake of the head would send them scurrying behind their counters and leave me to peruse the wares at my leisure. The thing was, I often didn’t have anything in particular in mind, but when it appeared, my heart would amp up a notch and I would know—this is it! Perfect.

That’s how it was with you. I had a sense that I was looking for something, rolling the possibilities over in my head. I didn’t go in strenuous pursuit, but there was a void waiting to be filled. When you came, it startled me at first, and I pretended you weren’t there. But already, you’d flirted with me and whispered, “I’m the one.”

Afraid of taking your hand, I held back, but you ignored me and set up house in a room in my heart where you waited patiently for me. You weren’t pushy, yet you stoked the fire in me and wrapped your tendrils around my fibers. When I acknowledged the inevitable, it was time to introduce you to my circle—just a few in the beginning, then an every-widening expanse. At every turn, kind eyes lit with approval, welcoming us.

Those early days were magical—words flew from my fingers as I wrote with you beside me. My muse. My encourager. And at night I would dream about you. About the future.
I admit, there were days when I paid you no mind. Not just days, but sometimes weeks on end when life intervened and I strayed away from you. Yet every time I returned, you were there, waiting with a golden glow that said, “Glad you made it.”

Me too. As a matter of fact, you made me so proud, I wanted to show you off to the world. We ran off to Amarillo and were met with a “Howdy Y’all” and a round of applause. Another time, in Oklahoma City, you perched beside me, calming me with your presence. When our name was called, we floated in tandem to shake a few hands and have our picture made.

So caught up with you I was in those days that when murmurings came warning me not to get too attached, I disregarded them. Yet, sometimes in the dark of night I would convince myself that should we part, I would survive. But that would be sometime in the future, not now.

We journeyed to Dallas and raised a few eyebrows, but in the midst of so many scribes, we were only a ripple. Still, they engraved your name . . . and mine on a plaque. Texans are generous like that.

When a West Coaster called and inquired about you, I was stunned. You, of course, said nothing, but gave me a playful wink. We’d been called for a higher honor. We danced with joy and waited, wondering if we could touch the stars or travel to heights unknown. The next summons came from the other direction, from the land of country music. Fitting really, since we were but two country critters at the core.

And again, the murmuring crept into casual conversations. Be careful. You don’t want your heart to be broken. We lifted our heads and nodded, then together we sighed in contentment when our names were joined on a dotted line.

The blow came when neither of us was looking—almost in the same way we had begun. We didn’t expect it, then there it was. But now, only one of us would continue on.

I don’t feel as brave now, and I will miss you, my friend. You’ve been a faithful companion, the best there is. My heart is sorrowful as I say good-bye to you, my Dandelion Day. I’ll try my best not to let you down.

Carla, who is awaiting the new title of her soon-to-be-published book, the one formerly known as A Dandelion Day.


Erica Vetsch said...

Oh, this was just beautiful. So true.

The new name will be beautiful too. I anxiously await the new title too. :)

Myra Johnson said...

Okay, you had me swept along here wondering where you were going with this beautiful tribute. Now don't you think it's about time you announced the new title on your blog???

Koala Bear Writer said...

Wow - this was certainly beautiful. I had to read it again once I knew what it was about. :) Looking forward to hearing what the new title will be - and more about the book!

BTW, I received Daisy Chain the mail yesterday and can't wait to start reading it. :) Thanks so much!!!