The house was bought for a modest price,
equivalent perhaps to a luxury car nowadays.
She remembers this Spring day down to the
last detail. It was a lovely, bright blue
sky with glorious sunshine. The perfect day
to start their life together. She was in the
kitchen, unpacking boxes, when he said,
"I'll be back soon". She just shook her head,
thinking, "he must have run out of cigarettes.
Why else would he leave with so much left
He was gone for an hour or so, returning
with, of course, a pack of cigarettes.
He held her hand, "come with me" he
said. Grabbing a shovel with the other hand,
he led her out to the backyard where a small
pine sapling sat in a pot tied with a red velvet
bow. She smiled. He had already decided on
the spot to plant, a clear view from the kitchen
window. He dug the hole, she complained
about the smoke. "When are you gonna quit
them damn things" she said. He just smiled,
planted the tree, firming the topsoil down
with his foot.
Many happy years passed, children born,
raised and moved on, the tree now full
grown. Lush green livens the backyard
through the coldest of winter. She sits at the
kitchen window, tears in her eyes, remembering
back to that Spring day. She can hear the
words he spoke to her as if he was standing
by her side. "Evergreen, our symbol of the
everlasting color and love you have brought
to my life."
His belongings remain exactly where he
last left them. A half pack of cigarettes, still in
his shirt pocket, hangs in the closet. Even the
ashtrays remain where he kept them. The
only difference, there were no more
butts in them. They are now filled with
pinecones that she picks fresh each year,
as she says to herself, "evergreen my love,