Circle

Look at the Moon,” I say to the man standing in the driveway.  It’s almost dawn now, and the full moon is falling across Little Duck lake.  Soon it will be gone.  The man’s Mom is waiting in the car to drive him to Wausau to catch the bus back to Madison and his fall semester.

That man is my son.  I reach up—way up—to hug him goodbye.  I hang on a bit longer than normal, even though they are running late.  I don’t want to let him go. 

Look at the Moon,” I whispered to that same little boy laying in his crib long ago.  The same thing I used to say to his sisters when the moonlight bounced off their crib and filled the room.  “Mooooon,” he would say and point at that beautiful white circle in the sky.  “Mooooon.” 

They roll up the driveway and I stand waving in the rear-view mirror.  I think he looks, but I can’t tell for sure.  I hope he is looking forward. 

The crunch of gravel fades away.  And then, I’m standing alone.  In the quiet.  And the moonlight.  It is starting to fade away, too.        

I turn and walk slowly back to the cabin.  My granddaughter Eloise is sleeping in there with her Mom.  I hope the sky is clear tonight, I think, so I can show her the moon, too.  Show her that beautiful moon. 

Mooooon.”   There is sadness, and there is joy, and there is beauty to show, when life is lived as it should be.  In a circle.  Rolling forward, in a circle.