October 4th, 2003 – August 25th, 2015
I remember the scent of your shampoo,
and the warmth of the cotton sleeper
I dressed you in for bed.
Only, you never made it to bed.
Not for a while, at least.
You cried for hours, so sad and scared,
probably wondering where your mother had gone,
and who the strange girl was,
trying to lay you down in your crib.
I held you that night,
letting your tears soak my shirt.
Eventually you fell into an exhausted sleep,
and I placed you gently into your crib,
and slept on the couch next to it.
And when you woke up in the night,
still so sad and scared,
I held you then, too,
until your mother came home to tend you.
Now I hold your mother,
and it’s her tears that soak my shirt.
It’s one of life’s little mysteries,
why God calls back his little angels
so early. Too early.
Still, there’s a comfort to be felt
knowing you are now in a place
where no earthly pain can touch you.
And one day, you will be returned
to your mother’s loving embrace.
—In loving memory of my cousin, Derek, who died too young.