“To Them Who Are the Called”

Thursday, October 24, 2019. 10:21 PM.

Hi Eileen

I walked this afternoon for 36 minutes in the sunshine.

Crossed the Blackstone River at the Court St. Bridge.

I like to cross the River there.

It’s special to cross that historic bridge, there.

Later, on Hamlet Avenue, I passed the house that was the location of NRICMHS, Inc., in the 1960s.

I saw Doctor Frank D. E. Jones there once every two weeks for 20 minutes for 5 years.

54 Hamlet Avenue.

The house faces Grove Street.

In the mid-to-late 1980s I lived in a house near the corner of Grove & Carrington.

And my parents first apartment after they were married in 1948 was on Grove Street.

It was a long ways from Hamlet Avenue, though – near Smith Street.

Dad pointed out the house to me once as we drove by on our way to Providence.

Dad often went to Providence to buy and order things for his TV & radio sales and service business.

I always look at that house whenever I walk by.

After passing the house, a man walking on the other side of the street was making hand signs to me.

Had no idea why he was doing that.

He kept showing me his hat and pointing to where I had passed.

Finally, his meaning dawned on me.

I had dropped my hat. It was on the sidewalk about 40 feet away.

I said thank you and picked it up.

It had been stuffed inside my jacket.

I take it off sometimes to let more sunlight shine on me.

Please forgive me for the following imaginary dialogue, Eileen.

Maybe it’s because you don’t write to me that I must write for you.

Eileen: “Mark, why are you telling me all this?”

Mark: “People do that, Eileen.”

Eileen: “Do what?”

Mark: “Write.”

Eileen: “But, why are you writing to me?”

Mark: “We were in the same class for five years, Eileen. I remember you often. We were in a play in the 8th grade: “Queen of the Prom.” You were the queen – remember, Eileen?  We went to the same church. We made Confirmation together. We even walked up the aisle of that church together side-by-side several times during Confirmation practice. I walked so close to you that our arms brushed against each other as we walked, side by side. You are still the only one I ever walked up the aisle with, Eileen. We went to the movies together. We went to the beach together. We went into the water together. We walked together with the Rhode Island Hikers Club. We went to Montreal, Canada and sat together on the bus all the way there and all the way back to Providence, Rhode Island. We played chess together in the basement of 116 Glade Road. We square danced together. We played frisbee/catch on Great Island and at the beach. We had lunch at George’s Restaurant together. We danced together in the night clubs of Narragansett — well you danced – I just did the best I could with no talent for dancing. We had the same homework to do for 5 years. In 8th grade during the last few weeks before we graduated, Sister William Mary gave us two mimeograph sheets with poems on them to memorize: one was “Abou Ben Adhem” and the other was “IF.” Sister William Mary also read a short story to us – a few pages a day for several days in a row. Later, I wondered why she read that particular story to us – because the plot of that story was so desperate; and the denouement so ambiguous. Did the man who prevailed at the end really “win” – considering what he became? And I found that story again many years later in a literature textbook at CCRI – and bought the book. And read the story again. To me, it was a “dark” story. Do you remember Sister William Mary reading that story to our 8th-grade class during the last few days of our graduation year, Eileen? The title was:  “The Most Dangerous Game,” by Richard Connell.

[approximately 14 pages]

I have not read it again in many years.

Eileen: “So, you have a lot of memories, Mark. So what?”

Mark: “So, how are you, Eileen?”

Eileen: “Mark, I don’t want to write to you.”

Mark: “See what happens to people, Eileen?”

Eileen: “What happens to people, Mark?”

Mark: “What is happening with you, Eileen? Why don’t you want to write to me?”

Eileen: “What’s happening with you, Mark?”

Mark: “I already told you a little about me, Eileen. And I’d be willing to tell you more if you would correspond with me. Did you read any of my writing at: https://marksimaginings.com/ “ ?

“Just When I Needed You Most” w/Lyrics- Randy VanWarmer

Eileen: “No, Mark, I haven’t visited your web page. I’m not interested. Why would I want to read the writing of someone who believes the Bible? I don’t want to hear the gospel, either. It’s the sword of the Spirit. It is very powerful, and I just can’t take it. It would just be too humbling to me to believe the truth of God’s Holy Scriptures.”

Eileen: “And another thing, Mark: I really don’t appreciate your writing dialogue that includes your imaginary words for me.”

Mark: “I apologize to you, Eileen. I understand that they are not really your words. The entire dialogue is all mine. I don’t really know what you think. Maybe that’s one reason why it would be nice to read a letter of yours, to read what you have to say. And I understand about not wanting to have someone preaching to you. However, the gospel isn’t merely a worldly matter, like being a progressive or a conservative or a liberal. It is of much greater importance than that.”

Eileen: “Mark, I don’t want you to know what I think.”

Mark: “Well, God bless you, Eileen.”

Eileen: “Thank you, Mark.”

Mark: “You’re welcome, Eileen.”

Mark: “Eileen?”

Eileen: “What is it now, Mark?”

Mark: “Would you like a hug, Eileen?”

Eileen: “No, Mark, I don’t want a hug.”

Mark: “Eileen, would you like a song?”

Eileen: “What song?”

Mark: “A heart-touching song, Eileen.”

Eileen: “No, Mark, I don’t want a heart-touching song. Do you sing heart-touching songs, Mark?”

Mark: “That’s another thing I don’t have much talent for – like dancing. However, if you, a school teacher, still like to teach . . .  well, it would be just loverly, Eileen, to be taught by you how to dance and to sing heart-touching songs, or, at least listen to them together. And I still remember you in 7th grade giving our class a ballet performance.”

Eileen: “Mark, do you listen to heart-touching songs?”

Mark: “Yes, Eileen. I listen to heart-touching songs every day.”

Eileen: “And what kind of songs do you find heart-touching, Mark?”

Mark: “Love songs and hymns and maybe a few classical pieces, like Ode to Joy.”

AMAZING – Flash Mob – Started by one little girl – Ode to Joy

Mark:  “Eileen, when I view and listen to this performance I think the “one little girl” is the daughter of the man playing the trombone. She resembles him. And then, I think the lady in black & white playing the violin is her mother. And I remember Charles Dickens the author of those wonderful novels he wrote, perhaps by divine inspiration – and I imagine he would [and maybe is] so inspired with joy when he, in heaven (I hope) sees this performance. And I think also of Beethoven who, also by divine inspiration, created this beautiful music. I imagine it gives him great joy and satisfaction to see how his music is still being played and enjoyed by so many people – even hundreds of years after he gave it to us, to bless us all with something so beautiful for all people.”

Mark: “I still remember leaving a songbook with you, Eileen, on Great Island, during “the summer of ’74.” I thought of that title for our friendship that summer after seeing the movie, The Summer of ’42. Sometimes, I wonder if you held on to that songbook “through the years.” Simon & Garfunkel’s “Bridge Over Troubled Waters.” I still like their music, including just about every single song they wrote and sang. And songs by many others, too – some of which are about relationships different than ours was for about three months between May and August 1974.

Kenny Rogers – Through The Years w/ Lyrics

Eileen: “And what kind of dancing would you like to learn, Mark?”

Mark: “The kind where I put my hand on a lady’s hip and my other hand into her hand and we just move gracefully and quietly together while listening to a love song.”

Eileen: “And why do you want to do that, Mark?”

Mark: “Wouldn’t It Be Loverly, Eileen?” – as loverly as Audrey Hepburn and her singing and dancing in “My Fair Lady.” And another song I like is of her singing “Moon River” in the movie: Breakfast At Tiffany’s 1961. 1961 was the year you came to St. Charles School, Eileen, in 4th grade. And that was the year we had “Geography” for a subject. The only year I ever had “geography.” And I remember talking with you about geography that time we had lunch at a D’Angelos Sandwich Shop in the South Bellingham shopping center about 1987. You recommended that I get an atlas because of my interest in geography. And I did get one. It’s a Funk & Wagnalls atlas. And I bought it at the Almacs that used to be in that shopping center in South Bellingham. And it’s worn now. And I bought another one, a Hammond Concise World Atlas; however, I still prefer the Funk & Wagnalls atlas even though the pages are falling out of it. Thank you, Eileen for that recommendation to buy an atlas. And thank you for having lunch with me that time. I bought the sandwiches and you bought the dessert: ice cream sundaes. I remember where we sat and some of our conversation.

Breakfast at Tiffany’s (3/9) Movie CLIP – Moon River (1961) HD

Eileen: “I don’t know if it would be loverly, Mark. What do you think?”

Mark: “Well, Eileen, at nearly 68 years old, I think I might just cry if I put my hand on a lady’s hip and held her other hand in mine and slowly danced with her. It’s been “like a thousand years” since I last danced with anyone.”

Christina Perri – A Thousand Years [Official Music Video]

“But do not forget this one thing, dear friends: With the Lord a day is like a thousand years, and a thousand years are like a day. The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. He is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance.” -2 Peter 3:8, 9. NIV Study Bible.

Eileen: “Why might you cry, Mark?”

Mark: “I suppose there are several reasons why. And then, I don’t really know what would happen. Maybe the good Lord would give me strength and fill my heart with joy; and I’d be happy and not cry at all. When I listen to love songs and beautiful hymns I usually feel like crying. I don’t actually start crying like a baby; just get teary-eyed and feel strong emotions. And, maybe, if you read my blog entries you would glean from them some insights about why I might cry.”

Eileen: “Mark, I really don’t want to see you crying. I wouldn’t know what to do with you. I might start crying, too. Then what would we do, Mark?”

Mark: “Well, Eileen, maybe we could just stop dancing and cry together. We haven’t done that, yet, together. Maybe we’d both feel better after a good cry.”

Eileen: “Why Mark, might we feel better after crying together?”

Mark: “Well, I don’t exactly know; but, I remember reading something about repentance that might shed some light on this and help us to understand.”

Eileen: “What do you remember reading about repentance, Mark?”

“Even if I caused you sorrow by my letter, I do not regret it. Though I did regret it – I see that my letter hurt you, but only for a little while – yet now I am happy, not because you were made sorry, but because your sorrow led you to repentance. For you became sorrowful as God intended and so were not harmed in any way by us. Godly sorrow brings repentance that leads to salvation and leaves no regret, but worldly sorrow brings death. See what this godly sorrow has produced in you: what earnestness, what eagerness to clear yourselves, what indignation, what alarm, what longing, what concern, what readiness to see justice done. At every point you have proved yourselves to be innocent in this matter.” 2 Corinthians 7:8-11. NIV Study Bible.

Eileen: “How are you feeling, Mark?”

Mark: “I’ve had abdominal pain every day for about two years. And I’m tired. And I don’t want to see a doctor anymore.”

Eileen: “Well, we’re all suffering, Mark. Life just gets difficult as we progress through it, you know.”

Mark: “Yes, I understand that, Eileen.”

Eileen: “And Mark, even if we cried, it wouldn’t bring back our youth.”

Mark: “I understand that, too, Eileen. I’d still like to hear from you,”

Eileen: “Why, Mark?”

Mark: “I miss you, Eileen.”

Eileen: “Why do you miss me, Mark?”

Mark: “We go back a long ways, Eileen. We have history in common. I still wonder sometimes about you suddenly being in my homeroom at Woonsocket High School junior year for a few weeks. You had not been a WHS student before. And then you were gone; no longer at Woonsocket High School at all.”

Eileen: “What about that, Mark?”

Mark: “It would be something interesting to read about that, if you wanted to write about it. If you don’t want to write about it that’s OK. I won’t pry. You could write about anything you’d like to write about. If you don’t like to write you could call me. I’m not very talkative. [As you can see, I am “write-ative” – but, I don’t talk as much as I write.] My email address is: ________.  Eileen, do you know I’m living in a manor with an Irish name: John F. Kennedy Manor. And honestly Eileen, he was, in my humble opinion, the most dearly loved President in our lifetime. He spoke so well. He was a writer, too. Here is a song I’ve been listening to, lately:

EL SHADDAI BY AMY GRANT

Eileen, if you can’t write to me . . . believing in the only true God will give you the liberty in your spirit, by the Helper, the Holy Spirit, to enable you to write. He loves you, Eileen. And he can help you. And He can forgive us. We all need His forgiveness. And no one can live apart from His Eternal Life. It is because He loves you that He keeps you in my memory and in my heart. And He gives me these words to write to you, to assure you of His love for you. Are you willing to receive His love and redemption, Eileen? That is why the gospel tracts are sent to you – not to “lord it over you” Eileen; but rather, to help you understand how to be saved. Education, intelligence, good works, membership in a religion do not save. Only by the grace of God through faith in God’s Son may we be saved by Him. He is the Savior. There is no other. It is not my personal opinion. It is God’s Way. Neither is it “just what I think.”

In His Love to you, Eileen.

Mark

October 24, 2019. 12:28 AM.

Just noticed there are 15 letters in your full name

[counting the apostrophe as a letter]

And there are 15 letters in His name: Lord Jesus Christ. And 15 letters in my full name, also. [full names not given in this blog].

Eileen: “And what does that mean, Mark?”

Mark: “I don’t know. I remember that it is written: “If anyone imagines that he knows something, he does not yet know as he ought to know. But if anyone loves God, he is known by God.” -1 Corinthians 8:2, 3. English Standard Version Study Bible.

Eileen: “Anything else, Mark?”

Mark: “Yes, Eileen.”

Eileen: “What?”

Mark: “I’d like to hear from you, Eileen. And just thought of a sweet song.”

Eileen: “What song is that, Mark?”

Mark: “Give A Little Bit”

A confession: I’m not a superstar, Eileen. I can’t come out on a stage and wow the audience. I’m not a king of the prom, either. I never went to a prom. Things like that are too spectacular for me. I’d rather just go for a walk. I like things that are very easy to do. Like sitting down and having a cup of tea. Even tea makes my belly ache sometimes; but, I drink it anyway. What do you like, Eileen? What is easy for you to do? Do you still play the guitar? Do you enjoy listening to music? Do you dance?

At least I can still write – thanks be to God. I couldn’t do it – or anything else — without Him. What can you do, Eileen?

Thinking now of a famous line in a movie: The Untouchables. Sean Connery’s character, several times during the movie, asked Kevin Costner’s character: “What are you prepared to do?” And those were also his last words as he lay dying. Eileen, can you at least believe the gospel of Christ – even if you cannot write back to me? If you do, you will live in His Kingdom for eternity. And, perhaps, during Eternity, there will come a moment when you want to write to me – or talk to me. And, by the grace of God – through faith in the Lord Jesus Christ – as the gospel proclaims – we will both be there, in His Kingdom, the Kingdom of God – or maybe somehow we’ll be in school together again. Hope that you’ll be there in first-grade, Eileen – on the very first day of class, instead of 4th grade. I am thankful that you did come to St. Charles School, Eileen, in the 4th grade – and that you stayed for all of the next 5 years. In 7th and 8th grades your presence in class was very special to me, like the sun shining all the time.

“Sweet Beulah Land – Squire Parsons”

Isaiah 62:1-12. NIV Study Bible.

“Abou Ben Adhem “

https://www.poetryfoundation.org/poems/44433/abou-ben-adhem

“And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose. For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren. Moreover whom he did predestinate, them he also called: and whom he called, them he also justified: and whom he justified, them he also glorified. What shall we then say to these things? If God be for us, who can be against us? He that spared not his own Son, but delivered him up for us all, how shall he not with him also freely give us all things? Who shall lay anything to the charge of God’s elect? It is God that justifieth. Who is he that condemneth? It is Christ that died, yea rather, that is risen again, who is even at the right hand of God, who also maketh intercession for us. Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? As it is written, For thy sake we are killed all the day long; we are accounted as sheep for the slaughter. Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us. For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.” -Romans 8:28-39. The Holy Bible. King James Version.

A Memory of George’s Beach

At the Restaurant, Outside

At a Table

Someone Said:

“I’m pining for you.”

I couldn’t reply to that.

I didn’t know if she was serious or kidding.

I never forgot it, though.

And when she appeared at my dad’s wake…

It was so surprising

We weren’t seeing each other anymore…

It was incomprehensible to me.

I went for a very long walk later that day…

I was thinking:

Eileen’s appearance at the wake is troubling me more than my dad’s death…

I mentioned this to my mother.

I told her that I was wondering if I should call Eileen.

Her reply wasn’t encouraging to me.

[That was at the very end of 1974. My dad had died on December 28, 1974. I was 23. You were 22.]

Now, it is October 27, 2019.

“Give Thanks – Don Moen with Lyrics”

God bless you, Eileen. God bless you with the faith of the Son of God.

Amen.

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