I don't understand why you have to go.

Was it something I said? Was it something I did?

I know we've been through this before. But it's different now. Back then, I was young and foolish. I'll admit I took you for granted. You came into my life and I never really appreciated you. When you left each time, I hardly noticed you were gone. Maybe because I knew you'd be back. You always came back.

But now, more than ever before in my life, I need you. The last time you left me, I thought you'd be gone for good. I longed for the warmth of your touch. My world seemed dark and dreary.

These past few months together have been glorious. I awakened each day eager to see you again. Never once did you let me down.

Our time together along the shore was absolutely perfect. Our days together basking in the sunlight will serve me well as precious memories in the cold empty days ahead.

The flowers you gave me were beautiful, matched only by colors of the blue skies, rainbows and sunsets.

I would follow you if I could. But you know I must stay behind once more.

Please promise you'll come back. But before you go, give me one last, magnificent day, then lay upon my lips a final kiss, so warm and tender. I will remember you, my friend, as I close my eyes and face the cold winter days ahead.

You will be tucked away in a safe place in my soul, with the memories of the red rose, the sunflower, lilies of the valley, peonies, and yes, even the dandelion.

I will remember the sounds of laughter in the park, the fireworks after dark and the sweet smells of church picnics, ethnic festivals and fresh-mowed lawns.

I am getting too old to face the cold.

But if God should grant me more time with you, you'll find me here waiting with open arms for your return, once more.

Farewell... Summer!

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