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The Greyhound took us

to Mama Cile’s

country home.

Too young

to drive ourselves,

we climbed aboard

for the short ride.

We only had

a couple of days

to explore my mama’s

childhood home of

Washington, known

for its history and beauty.

I hoped we could get

everything planned done.

It just so happened

that my cousin, Betty,

was visiting, too,

and she had figured out

some fun things

for my friend and me

to do.

That first evening

we arrived,

cousin Betty had

happy twinkles

in her beautiful eyes.

We climbed into Betty’s

convertible sports car

where she dropped us

at some little clubhouse

where the younger teens gathered.

I didn’t know

what I’d find within.

When he caught my eye,

I couldn’t quit staring at him.

Before I had a chance

to catch my breath,

he and his friend

approached us.

John was his name,

and he was blonde

and good-looking,

but it was when he spoke,

things began popping.

The rest is a fairytale.

It was a crush-on

at first sight.

We went water skiing

in his family’s boat,

and he rode me around

on his cool motor-bike.

Distance didn’t stop us

from having dates and adventures.

I could have fallen super hard

for this guy with manners,

a true Southern gentleman.

He was the nicest guy ever!

We enjoyed the same things.

Then one day,

he quit calling.

I tried to ignore it,

but my heart wouldn’t let me.

I was so young,

and I couldn’t even drive.

I would say it was “puppy love,”

and go back to my girlish ways.

And then the truth was revealed.

John didn’t have much time

left on this earth.

He was dying,

and he kept it a secret.

No one would tell me

although they all knew.

What was a girl like me

suppose to do?

I learned about love,

kindness, and humility.

I had to grow up fast.

Maybe this was best in the long run.

He saved me from suffering.

John never said a word.

That’s a true child of God’s.

But me, well,

I am just a little bird.

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