• Vol. 05
  • Chapter
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A Little Comfort

When I’m very close to you, as I am now, I love you with a love so deep I’m lost for words. All I know is that, since the day you were born, you’ve been the only human I can no longer imagine life without.

Sometimes, when I’m not quite looking at you, I see you more clearly, love you more dearly, lose myself entirely, in you. Now, I see your seagreen eyes and smell your sweet clean after-the-bath-ness. I sense your concentration and hear your calm breathing, now that I’ve taken the sea-urchin spines from your feet, now that I’m bathing them in warm vinegar-water to persuade any lingering spine-shafts to come out.

You trust with your whole soul that I’ll always know what to do, whatever happens, and I’m filled with a sadness that I do my very best to hide. But once a mother always a mother. My own mother said that to me when I was a young woman. I didn’t understand her then because you hadn’t arrived in my life. Now I understand her with my whole heart.

Because when I imagine what life might throw at you, when I wish all your future troubles as easily solved as this one, I cry with the knowledge that your heart and your soul will be pierced and I’ll be powerless to help. I can’t even say, truthfully, that I’ll always be here. All I can hope for, as I dry your feet and you throw your arms round my neck, is that you’ll remember this day and it will provide a little comfort.

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