Keeping my heart in his pocket, he said, made him feel it would not seem so far away. It was a silly thing, the conversation on that last night. I can’t remember how it started but he made me a promise that if he could keep my heart then I could keep the moon. When he returned we would swap, my heart in exchange for the moon.
His letters arrived battered with black and sinister marks throughout – and there was always too much time between them. Too few words in them, no matter the number. He was ‘good’ and ‘safe’ and I believed him because I had to. They were just repairing school houses and things like that, he said. “Nothing dangerous.” Always at the close he’d write, “I’ve got your heart in my pocket and it’s safe. Are you keeping the moon for me?” I was.
My days were just a repository for the minutes and hours to empty into. Days without letters where black and white. Days with letters were loud with color and bright with sound. “Are you keeping the moon?” Yes, I was. I kept it all night long. Every night. Faithfully. The moon and I had become quite close. She was the only one I shared my tears with, the only one who understood.
Months marched on and letters still came, but infrequently. He needed soap, batteries and white socks. I sent soap, batteries and white socks – to him – to them, his buddies. Fellows who had no one’s heart in their pockets. Young men. Brave Men. Lonely men.
And I kept the moon all the while, safe for him, a gift for his return. Sometimes on a still night, cold and standing in wet grass I wondered if he was keeping the moon. Out there. In that place where my heart could only travel, safely tucked next to his heart. “Is he keeping you too?” I’d ask the moon but she did not answer. She only sung in blues and greys and sometimes gold – but she did not answer.
When he was just weeks from my embrace I lost the moon. The night was black with rain, cold and walled in itself. There was no escape for me or her, we were trapped by relentless pounding and merciless sky. All the night I stood at the window trying to find the lost moon but it, like he, was gone.
No letters arrived with assurances of my heart’s safety – and it thumped in my chest like a drum out of tune. The parade had ended. I stopped keeping the moon.
14 thoughts on “Keeping – Theme Fridays”
Such simple beauty, I loved how you wrote this. The theme is vast. Keeping.
The parade had ended. I stopped keeping the moon.
Thank you, dear – I’m always surprised at what comes from these theme prompts and sometimes simple is best, don’t you think?
Oh, this is just lovely writing, a heartbreaking story, Chica. Keeping, keeping up the good work!
Heart for the moon- beautiful and dangerous…
Thank you, sweetie – yes, life is dangerous sometimes, eh? I think we’ve done pretty well these last couple of weeks, I really do.
The Lion works as a civilian for National Defense in casualty support (he helps people being released from service for medical reasons find civilian employment). All too often, when I pick him up from work, he quietly says “We lost another one today.” So many moons, so many hearts.
Yeah, yeah…too true.
You really turned that one word “Keeping” into something to remember. That was a beautiful story even with the sad ending. It shows how you can’t hold on to some things no matter how you try. I keep my son close to my heart even though he breaks it almost every day. It repairs itself only to be broken again the next day. Hearts are such fragile things. Great, Annie.
Hugs and Jugs
Aw, thanks Joanie, but lately I feel like I’m reminding you of sad things. Hearts are fragile but bravehearts, like yours are strong. Love will win.
Hugs & Jugs,
Heart in my pocket. Keeping the moon. So romantic, so beautiful.
And so sad.
Hey 30 – I didn’t know you were an ol’ softie. 😉 Thanks, hon.
Liked this too. Although I’m not good with sad endings. And one thing I noticed, how you made the moon female, la luna.
Will have to find some time to join you guys. Soon I hope.
You know, I really tried to make the story end happily but it wouldn’t go there. What can you do?
Yay! that would be muy fantastico if you could/would/did join us. We do have fun, we really really do.
Oh, how sad but how beautiful too. Eloquent Annie, that’s you. 🙂
Aw thanks, Teens. I love that word. I like the idea it might somehow be connected to me. 🙂
Ah, the lovely moon … how many loves has she seen through time? Tis lovely to think she has been so steadfast in keeping the secrets for eternity!
Really enjoyed both essays on Keeping … thank you WC.
Thanks Gerry – I enjoyed writing the piece, I think our Theme Fridays is getting into its own groove now, which is really nice. Thanks for staying with us on it.
Annie, my first thought was, you are killing me! lol! Seriously brings back memories and that’s what makes it so lovely, so beautiful. How many lovers look at a moon longing for the other?
Just lovely,beautiful,big sigh here.
Btw, I shall never think of ‘keeping’ in quite the same way, my sweet friend. You really need to be published. You are so gifted!
Hugs to ya!
Hi Sweet Angie,
You know, I really didn’t think of that but you’re right – the moon does belong to lovers, doesn’t it? Keeping took on a different dimension for me as well when writing this – a nice little surprise. Oh, I love your sentiment about publishing – thanks, dear.
So romantic and yet so sad. I guess I would call it a poignant story. Loved it. 😀
Thanks, Mrs. V – yes, I guess poignant would be a good word for it. I guess they all can’t have happy endings, eh?
This was great Annie. So sad at the end but so full of hope for most of it. If we don’t have hope to carry us through the hard times, what do we have???
Yep, sometimes it’s all we have but it’s often enough.
annie, annie, annie. i don’t get around to these theme fridays often enough. i pledged christine that i would do better, especially since you’re down one and it would be a cryin’ shame if the two of you still standing gave it up, too. so i made good on my pledge and you did not disappoint me.
i was rooting for them, was sorry she lost the moon, was worried sick for him and the him and hers like him “over there”. such a beautifully sad concept.
Clancyjane, as I live and breathe! So glad to see you again. Well Chica and I are carrying on, so don’t you worry about that.
I was rooting for them too – funny how stories turn on their sometimes. Thanks for reading, it means a lot to me.
annie – this came from a well deep
within you, to write with this much emotion
and true heart, ty for sharing. you’re so
good it’s scary.
As always you pay me the nicest compliments. “So good, it’s scary” I love the sound of that – if only you were a publisher. 😉