Three years ago, I walked into a map shop and discovered some beautiful Marbles-- small replicas of the earth in varied color patterns.  I searched through the bin, fingering them with my eyes closed, for the right ones.  I  examined the color patterns and chose a set of pearly white ones with azure land masses.

I sat at home and wrote you a note:
     As You go through this troubled time, keep this marble.  Always remember that someone loves You enough to hand you the world.  When You feel like You've lost your marbles,  You've still got one.  When ever You feel frightened or alone, hold the orb and I'll be there walking with You in love and strength.  The colors represent purity and hope.  Walk in the light. I love You.

With all the love I could muster, I spent the weekend praying that the marble would work for you.  I held and loved them equally-- not knowing which marble you would choose.

Monday I ran to your work place.  You sat in your car; I handed you the note as you smiled at me and cautioned that we were being watched.  Reaching into my left pocket,  I pulled out my gifts so you couldn't see what I held.  I switched the marbles from hand to hand and placing one marble in each fist I offered them to you, "Which hand?"  You chose the right.  I opened my hand and revealed your gift.  Your eyes glistened as you took the orb and examined it.  You smiled and thanked me.  I opened my other hand and showed you its mate.  "Read the note."   You read the note and swallowed hard. You signed, "I love you" my back was to the onlookers I smiled my widest so happy I could just s**t the stratusphere smile.  Putting my marble into my left pocket, I returned your sign and headed over the hill to my work place.  The day at the group home blurred with you thoughts.

Three days later we exchanged first kisses.  I ran from my world and into yours.  We exchanged orbs as each had been charged with the other's spirit.  I held the globe and I prayed that I would always be good enough for you.  The marble symbolized all that was us.  I held it in new lover's wonderment.  A new life, untainted.  Alive for the first time in a new world, eyes heart and soul opened, my body awakened and constantly starving.

Two months later you had to leave my heart.  My world shattered; shards of it embeded pemanently into your left hand.  My marble hardly left my hand.  I fiddled with it in my pocket and I stared at it, as I had gazed into your heart, for mind boggling amounts of time.  I clutched it on the nights I woke up screaming and paced the floors unable to sleep in the bed we had shared: unwilling to change the sheets that still smelled like you.  I held it's hope that you would return to me with a big tube of love's super glue and that you would repair the damage.

As the years passed, my marble became my best worry bead.  I carried it when my friend died and I needed the strength to watch her being planted.  On days when I wasn't feeling patient, I squeezed it betwen my thumb and forefinger releasing tension.  I cupped the orb in my hand and I prayed in hope that you were well and happy.  I asked for the privelege of seeing you again.  You were gone and I couldn't know if you were hurt.  The days I sensed that something was wrong I hoped for you to be at peace.  I gave thanks for you almost daily and sent you my love.

Three months ago,  I saw you at a Pride Festival.  Memories I'd forced myself to forget came flooding back with all the passion associated with them.  My eyes followed your every movement-- as though they weren't connected by my brain, but were fused into my heart.  I got the courage to reach into my pocket " I have something to show you"  I flashed my marble at you and you grinned that grin that had stolen my heart in the first place.  You did not return my gesture.

Lately I look at my marble; I roll it between my fingers remembering its symbols of hope and purity.  The earth also symbolizes the revolution of time and changes.  I wish that you were here to talk to me.  To listen to me, to advise me as someone who knows my self and loves me for it or inspite of it.  I'm  a fledgling looking for my mentor.  The marble is also a circle-- life is filled with circles.  I hoped that if I ever met anyone who invited me to join her circle, as I once invited you in to mine, that I would have the grace to treat her with all the love and respect that you showered upon me.  I hold my marble in hope that I will honor her as you honored my spirit.
                            Thank you, always.....

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