By Ron Bovasso
Photography by Sara Caruso

The door stood ajar at the end of the hall. It made me pause mid-stride.
I didn’t know this new one yet, or what I’d find inside.

“Come in,” I heard a woman’s voice, and stepped into her room.
She smiled brightly. Said she was “Mae”, and handed me a broom.

“I’ve spilled my jar of treasures. They’re scattered on the floor.
Please help me reach the smaller ones that rolled behind the door.”

“Sea glass,” I said. She shook her head. “Sea flakes,” she whispered low.
“No two are ever quite the same. Like snowflakes, don’t you know!”

I helped her gather the colored bits, like kids of long ago.
First back and forth, now up and down, and rocking heel to toe.

“My mother named the gems for me; amethyst and zircon, the rubies and the jades.
I love the blues; like oceans and sky. I have so many shades.”

Her treasures now secured again, their jug back on the shelf,
She spoke of sand, and waves, and friends, but softly, to herself.

She talked of how their lips were blue, and fingertips turned pink.
She tapped the jar for memories and made the pieces clink.

“There’s ninety years of me in there, my photos, my letters, my dreams.
I see my family, and friends I loved. I know how sad that seems.”

“Not sad,” I said. “They’re precious jewels. Next week, we’ll talk some more.”
She smiled at me. She took my hand, and walked me to her door.

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