It seemed so natural to lean my head on his shoulder as we shared our coffee on the autumnal porch, reminiscing about the winter holidays, spring  flowers, and summer downpours we had enjoyed on that porch.  The deepening twilight softened the outlines of the shrubbery in the yard.  We still sat, talking and laughing.


We lost the corners of the porch to the wrapping darkness. He ruffled my hair as I set down my cup.  Romance always comes more easily to me in the night, when everything seems more immediate, more tactile.


He had learned this quirk of mine.  He respects me by pandering to my sensibilities.  I love him for his gentleness.


For twenty-six years we had been learning about each other.  Twenty-six years is a long time.  He agreed.  Our reminiscing peppered with laughter, we enjoyed discussing the highlights.


Collecting our cups, we fled the mosquitoes.  Inside, I set the cups among the others in the sink.  He hugged me, and I relaxed against him, content.  I was at peace to the center of my soul.


“Twenty-six years,” he whispered.  “I’d marry you all over again.”


I turned to face him.  “I would, too.  But maybe skip the wedding?”  We both laughed at the memory.  He switched out the light as we walked, arms locked around each other, to the living room couch.


Twenty-six years of romantic nights, when the lights are too dim to see well.  We know each other well.  But, somehow, he still surprises me.



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