The Tenderness of Mortals



How joyful to be together, alone

as when we first were joined
in our little house by the river
long ago, except that now we know

each other, as we did not then;
and now instead of two stories fumbling
to meet, we belong to one story
that the two, joining, made. And now

we touch each other with the tenderness
of mortals, who know themselves:
how joyful to feel the heart quake

at the sight of a grandmother,
old friend in the morning light,
beautiful in her blue robe!
~Wendell Berry “The Blue Robe”


Not grandparents (yet) but after 34 years together, we are gray enough and have earned enough wrinkles and sags to know well each other and the familiar landscape we occupy together.

So good to know our hearts still quake with the tenderness of mortals growing old together!





9 thoughts on “The Tenderness of Mortals

  1. So lovely! Simple grace! I’m assuming this is your anniversary, and offering congratulations and blessing! Soon my “tender mortal” and me will celebrate our 58th, with the enduring love and I joy see in YOUR faces!


  2. What a lovely testament – witness to all that it IS possible to achieve and grow together in an enduring love….man and woman, blessed by Christ and sanctified in holy marriage….


  3. Congratulations! The Berry poem is just right!

    Sent from my iPhone

    Diann Sherwin 29328 Turnberry Dr Dagsboro, DE 19939-3412 Home & FAX: 302.539.8626 Mobile: 703.625.3691



  4. 39 and going here…an incredible gift He gives us, and we find it year by year, trial by trial, joy by joy. congratulations and may the wonder and blessings continue!!


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