Nostalgia, longing,

Is that what they call that slow, sad ache in my chest?


I get it when I think of my distant past,

My childhood, those days of security and family.


Parents who took care of everything, a father who was

Always there and the most honest man I have ever known.


The nostalgic pain is refreshed when I go on line and look at

Pictures of the town I grew up in and the memories they bring.


Today I am sitting in my writing desk listening to an infomercial on the tv in the other room.

It is an ad for recordings of love songs of the last 50 years, the nostalgic ache is as great as the music is beautiful.


A Time/Life collection of love songs from the past a few of which are:  “At Last” by Etta James, “Stardust” by Nat King Cole, “Chances Are” by Jonny Mathis, and one of my very favorites “What a Beautiful World” by Louis Armstrong.  Where have all the good love songs gone?

Are they gone because love isn’t the same today as it was then?  Is it because sex means nothing more than a bodily function to most people? Are people really that difference now than they were in the recent past, or do they just not know any better?

Have we changed so much that love and sex are not personal or important anymore?  I hope not although that is the way it seems more and more.

But I refuse to believe it even though I have loved and surrendered myself, all of me in truth to three men in my life and have been used and left behind by each of them.

Did I expect too much, expect them to be more than they are capable of? And was the past really so much better or have I painted it with unrealistic and romanticized memories based on songs?  I don’t know, maybe.

But I remember my dad dancing with my mom in the living room, and I remember him telling me that there was no greater job to be done in this world than the one my mother did taking care of us and our home.

He lived and treated us and everyone in his life with respect and love.  My ideas on how things should be are greatly influenced by him, and for that I am thankful.

Maybe it is because of him that my disappointments of the past and the most recent one have so deeply affected me, my dad is a hard act to follow.

But on the other hand it is because of the things he taught me that I will try to keep my heart open in the hope that maybe somewhere out there is a man who remembers the old love songs and what they really meant.
A man who is open to love and trust, understanding and compassion.  I’m sure he exists; I just don’t know where to find him.