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July 2019 Vol. 15 No. 2

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Lew Watts

A Pistol

is how my wife of one hour has always described her mother, and with good reason. As a captain in the US army, she opened the first field hospital at Dunkirk, and later became a professor of psychiatric nursing. And even though well past eighty, she’s still as sharp as a tack.

My wife and I are survivors of four previous marriages, one of which was mine. My best-man brother has kept his promise not to highlight this, and has ended his speech with a toast to the bride and groom. My wife now surprises her mother by asking if she will say a few words to end the formalities. It takes a while for her to find her cane, but she plants it firmly and straightens up to stand.

“Just don’t ask me to remember his name,” she says, before sitting.

hospice bedside
she and I agree
I’m Brian