Fifty-Eight Years

Fifty-eight years, he thought.  Fifty-eight years of my life have been spent with you by my side.

It still didn’t seem like nearly that much time had passed.  He let his eyes close, and inhaled deeply.

He remembered back to the first time he saw her, sitting on the edge of the cliff just off of the hiking path.  Her hair was pulled back into a nest of curls, and her red flannel shirt hung loosely around her shoulders as she held a tattered book in her hands.  He remembered the smell of moss and the sound the leaves made as they crunched and shredded under his boots.  She had looked up at him, turning up the corner of her mouth into a half-smile, and gently patted the cold ground to call him over, as if she had expected him all the while.

As the memory played like a film reel behind his closed eyes, he grasped her hand and held it tight to his chest. He intertwined her cold, bony fingers with his.

He sighed softly, and thought to himself, Fifty-eight years never did seem like enough time.

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