June 17, 2001
Letter From Daddy


me and daddy

Dear Terri Lynn,

Do you remember, a long time ago, when you were scared to go to sleep because the wind was blowing so hard? And I sat on your bed and told you about the wind? I told you how the wind could be your friend, and the Indians called the wind ‘Mariah.’ And we left the window open, just a little bit, so Mariah could kiss your cheek as you slept.

Last night I was very tired from working so hard ... so I walked all by myself. I walked down through a little meadow, where there was a campfire long ago. I walked over a little hill and down a small trail. When I stopped walking, I was standing on a big rock on the edge of a stream.

I stood very still and listened. I could almost hear a little boy laugh, and almost see a little girl catching her first fish. For the first time since I last saw you, I felt I wasn’t alone. And then, Mariah kissed me. A light, sweet kiss. On my cheek, ever so sweetly. And I knew then that my little girl had sent me a goodnight kiss on the wind ...

Look outside now. Is the wind blowing? Is Mariah there? She has a kiss for each of you, because I can’t bring them myself. Every night now I’ll give Mariah a kiss to take to you, until the day comes when I can kiss you goodnight. That day will come, I promise you. Until it does, I can only love you, and miss you.

August 22, 1964

throw a rock