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Consider This

By LC Van Savage

The Steeplejack

Anyone could see she loved that man up high
But he did not look down at her, that guy up in the sky.
But I knew that she loved him. I truly understood
As I watched that pretty girl in our neighborhood.
She was small and lithesome, and tended toward pink dresses
Her hair was long and yellow. (In olden days, "silk tresses.")
It was summer then; the young girl wore no shoes
Sun breezes tossed her hair and lit her eyes with druse.
I said "Why do you watch him every single day?"
She stared at me and finally said "I have to find a way.
"But, I don't know you, never met you. So why do you ask?"
"Oh please," I said, "forgive me, but every day I've passed,
"I see you watching him up there and I wonder why."
I really had to know why she stared up at his sky.
The sweet girl dropped her eyelids then and I could see a tear
Slide slowly down upon her cheek, crystal-like and clear.
She looked at me and tried to smile and started in to speak
But choked a bit and when she spoke, her voice was soft and meek.
"I follow him to all his jobs with hopes he'll notice me
"But he's so high and I'm so low and I can't make him see
"That I'm down here awaiting him. And he just passes by
"When he comes down. I try to speak, but all I do is sigh."
I looked up at the man she loved, and wondered how she could
Fancy this odd steeplejack. What if he were no good?
Even from my viewpoint I saw this young man clear
He was a comely lad, a man who had no fear
Of soaring heights and sun and gales and birds and bees and rain
I thought "to do that job up there, he's got to be insane!"
His hair was yellow, just like hers, his muscles thick and taut
His legs were long, tanned arms were strong, he was a juggernaut.
I looked back at the sweet young girl. She smiled way up at him
And I could tell she thought he was one of the seraphim.
I heard some music from on high, strange and sweet and pure
I looked to see the source of it and then I knew for sure.
It floated from that boy above, for taped to his platform
He had a radio there for him, his music was skyborn.
And as it played he hummed along, his voice was deep and mellow
And sometimes he would sing some words; his voice was like a cello.
The tanned young man swung back and forth, he wore an old straw hat
He transformed that old steeple with paint and love thereat.
He loved his job and it was clear he had great love for spires
And churches too. So this boy was the one they always hired
To do the job. He could be trusted always to fulfill
His obligations for that job for which he had such skill.
The days passed on, the steeplejack continued with his job
The sweet young girl continued too, to watch her dear heartthrob.
Then late one day as his job slowed, the young man by mistake
Cut the tape which held his radio. He knew that it would break
When it fell down onto the street. That radio would smash.
And then his source of music would just be only trash.
He watched it fall down toward the street and saw it spin and whirl
But then to his great horror, it landed on the girl.
It hit her head and knocked her down. The steeplejack screamed "No!"
Then he rappelled down to her side and shouted "Someone! Go!
"Please! Call an ambulance for this lovely wounded lass!
"My radio has killed her. I think her brains are bashed."
He then knelt down beside her and pulled her body close
And stared at her unconscious face and thought "she is the most
"Lovely creature I have seen. Where has she been til now?"
And then he heard the sirens wail, and finally did allow
The men to come and pick her up and put her on the stretcher.
And one kind medic said to him, "Don't worry son, I'll betcha
"She'll be fine. I've seen much worse. We'll take the best of care.
"You want to come and ride with her? We think it's only fair,
"Since 'cause of you she got this way, so you should really go
"To hospital with her. You'll see it through, I know."
The steeplejack's name was Tom, the young girl's name was June
And hat pushed back, he held her hand and soft began to croon.
His voice, just like it was on high, was hushed and sweet and mellow
And June responded slightly to that voice so like a cello.
The steeplejack sat by her sickbed every day
And gently held her hand and each day he would pray.
He'd also sing to June, she slept her coma through.
And as she had before, he thought he saw her move.
"I'm sorry, dear sweet June," Tom whispered through his tears
"I've only just found out you've loved me for some years.
"A woman told me that. She said you always stood
"Below me as I worked. Who knew? The likelihood
"Of someone sweet like you watching me each day
"I just could not believe. I don't know what to say!
"Oh June, you've loved me long while I was high above
"I never saw you there. I never felt your love.
"I never looked below. The sky is where I thrive,
"I love it way up there. It's where I feel alive!
"I paint and fix the steeples, and play my music too
"What better life than that? But now, dear June, there's you.
"Seeing you each day, knowing why you're here
"Makes me think that I must always keep you near.
"I wish you'd spoken out when I came down each eve
"But I know that you're shy, and young and so naive.
"I pray that you will wake, my darling little girl
"There is so much to say, my head is all a-whirl.
"To see you sleeping there makes my heart ache with pain
"It's my fault that you're here, I couldn't pre-ordain
"That this could really happen, but now because it has
"I think I've finally found my love. I'm happy! But alas,
"You can't wake up and I don't know if you will ever see me
"Or if we'll speak or love or play, or if you'll e'er redeem me."
He lay his head down by her side and wept some more that night
And slept a while and then stood up and reached to shut the light.
"Tom?" he heard, the sound was soft, but still it shocked him deep.
And "Tom?" again, and Tom stood still. He felt his sore heart beat.
"Is it you? Are you back?" the young man nearly wept.
Her eyes were wide, her lips a-smile. He stared, could not accept
That June awoke and spoke to him. Then joy spread through his soul!
"Yes, I'm back" she grinned at him. Her hair was marigold.
Her eyes were blue, like skies in fall, her lips were bright and pink
Her body full, her face just glowed. All Tom could do was blink.
And finally, when his breath came back, he said "You are my life.
"I know how you have waited, June, so now, please, be my wife!"
And pretty June stared up at him, his face was very near.
Her heart was full, she said to him "Oh Tom, my darling dear,
"May I go to the sky with you?" she asked her startled swain
"To the steeples with me, dear? In wind and sun and rain?"
"Yes my darling," June said clear. "Please do teach me how
"To fix the steeples, just like you, to be together now
"And every day. We'll work together up there in the sky!"
"Well, yes!" he laughed, "I can do that. Together! You and I
"Up atop the world we two, what a team indeed!"
June grinned at Tom and said, "I have one other need."
"What's that, beloved June," said Tom. "Your wish is my desire."
"I want," she said, "for us to marry while swinging from a spire.
"I want for us to marry in a sunset's wondrous glow
"And wave to all our cherished friends cheering us below.
"While roped to a great steeple, I want to say our vows
"And we will use old fashioned words like `promise, thee's and thou's.'"
"I want," said June, "the two of us to wed while in the air
"Can you find a preacher who'd marry us up there?"
"Oh yes!" laughed Tom. "I've just the man. He'll do the job for sure."
"Oh Tom!" sighed June, "I really could not ever ask for more.
"Oh June, my June," cried Tom, "Imagine! Married close to God!
"But June, you haven't answered me!" Tom said with mournful nod.
"We've all these plans and I'm so thrilled, by you have not agreed
"To marry me my darling girl, oh June, say yes, I plead!"
She'd waited for this dear young man, her steeplejack, forever
And now he was right here with her, planning life together.
"Dear Tom," she smiled, "I've loved you long, so surely you can guess
"Marry you? Who loves the sky? Oh yes, dear Tom. Oh yes."

©LC Van Savage

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