It’s a day full of flowers here in Southern California. Evening is slipping down from a gentle sky, the light slow and soft, and I am traveling along the deep memory road.

I have been looking through our Valentines, Darling. I find that I have about thirty of them, going all the way back to the first year.

They draw me down the shadowed path to those days, recalling your bright voice in the eternity of youth and the magic that you spoke, and the deeper magic you said with your eyes. We were so happy, two little outsiders who had done the impossible: we had found someone who wanted us.

You came into my miserable little flat in a dreary corner of New York, looked around and said, “it has possibilities.” Not only the apartment, but us. We had possibilities.

The ability to seek back across nearly half a century of love is a blessing so great that I can hardly imagine it to be mine. Often, still, my hand reaches out to you in the night, searching the empty sheets. My mind knows the truth, my heart feels it, but my body is not convinced.

Within me, I can hear you speaking and not a week passes that some other sign doesn’t appear, improbably but firmly suggesting that you are still somewhere, and you remain open to me, and know me.

My heart knows and my mind. My body, though, can only believe in one thing, and that is touch. A body can kiss but not remember a kiss. It can feel naked skin but it cannot remember naked skin. My heart encompasses memories of both the first kiss and the last, the one dancing and trembling, the other a bright sweet touch in an ocean of tears. But my body waits, seeking that next kiss, and will wait until it, also, is granted the blessing that has enfolded you.

Each night, I pray that I may join you. Nothing is in my mind for long but that. And yet, my health is that of a man of thirty. How long must I continue struggling in this passage of stones?

The light now has almost left the sky. Far above, late birds circle. The voice of a child rises singing, and then is gone. Will you visit me tonight, Valentine, my night-blooming flower?

The twin mysteries of love and marriage enclose me in their ghostly, insistent arms. I am a husband in a silent room. Goodnight, Valentine.

46 Comments

  1. Dear Whitley, my heart goes
    Dear Whitley, my heart goes out to you and your beloved. Somehow, someway we are connected to our loved ones. They come in our dreams and we feel them in the silent moments. She is there and always will be throughout eternity. May God bless you and assure you that she isn’t gone. She only took a trip for a short while and you will see her home safe again once more.

  2. Dear Whitley, my heart goes
    Dear Whitley, my heart goes out to you and your beloved. Somehow, someway we are connected to our loved ones. They come in our dreams and we feel them in the silent moments. She is there and always will be throughout eternity. May God bless you and assure you that she isn’t gone. She only took a trip for a short while and you will see her home safe again once more.

  3. Dear Whitley, my heart goes
    Dear Whitley, my heart goes out to you and your beloved. Somehow, someway we are connected to our loved ones. They come in our dreams and we feel them in the silent moments. She is there and always will be throughout eternity. May God bless you and assure you that she isn’t gone. She only took a trip for a short while and you will see her home safe again once more.

  4. Dear Whitley, my heart goes
    Dear Whitley, my heart goes out to you and your beloved. Somehow, someway we are connected to our loved ones. They come in our dreams and we feel them in the silent moments. She is there and always will be throughout eternity. May God bless you and assure you that she isn’t gone. She only took a trip for a short while and you will see her home safe again once more.

  5. Dear Whitley, my heart goes
    Dear Whitley, my heart goes out to you and your beloved. Somehow, someway we are connected to our loved ones. They come in our dreams and we feel them in the silent moments. She is there and always will be throughout eternity. May God bless you and assure you that she isn’t gone. She only took a trip for a short while and you will see her home safe again once more.

  6. Dear Whitley, my heart goes
    Dear Whitley, my heart goes out to you and your beloved. Somehow, someway we are connected to our loved ones. They come in our dreams and we feel them in the silent moments. She is there and always will be throughout eternity. May God bless you and assure you that she isn’t gone. She only took a trip for a short while and you will see her home safe again once more.

  7. Dear Whitley, my heart goes
    Dear Whitley, my heart goes out to you and your beloved. Somehow, someway we are connected to our loved ones. They come in our dreams and we feel them in the silent moments. She is there and always will be throughout eternity. May God bless you and assure you that she isn’t gone. She only took a trip for a short while and you will see her home safe again once more.

  8. Dear Whitley, my heart goes
    Dear Whitley, my heart goes out to you and your beloved. Somehow, someway we are connected to our loved ones. They come in our dreams and we feel them in the silent moments. She is there and always will be throughout eternity. May God bless you and assure you that she isn’t gone. She only took a trip for a short while and you will see her home safe again once more.

  9. Dear Whitley, my heart goes
    Dear Whitley, my heart goes out to you and your beloved. Somehow, someway we are connected to our loved ones. They come in our dreams and we feel them in the silent moments. She is there and always will be throughout eternity. May God bless you and assure you that she isn’t gone. She only took a trip for a short while and you will see her home safe again once more.

  10. Dear Whitley, my heart goes
    Dear Whitley, my heart goes out to you and your beloved. Somehow, someway we are connected to our loved ones. They come in our dreams and we feel them in the silent moments. She is there and always will be throughout eternity. May God bless you and assure you that she isn’t gone. She only took a trip for a short while and you will see her home safe again once more.

  11. My eyes welled up with tears
    My eyes welled up with tears as I read your journal entry. I think about my own dear wife, and how devastating it would be to lose her. We go back a long way. We sort of rescued each other from the depths of loneliness after our divorces. I can not imagine a day without her, so I have a small intimation of the enormity of your sorrow. May God be with you until you and Annie meet again.

  12. My eyes welled up with tears
    My eyes welled up with tears as I read your journal entry. I think about my own dear wife, and how devastating it would be to lose her. We go back a long way. We sort of rescued each other from the depths of loneliness after our divorces. I can not imagine a day without her, so I have a small intimation of the enormity of your sorrow. May God be with you until you and Annie meet again.

  13. Whitley: I know that you
    Whitley: I know that you don’t mean this entry to be sad, but for many of us it is. We followed Anne’s struggle and hoped and prayed that she could somehow “beat” her condition. Of course it was futile, but also completely natural to hope. Presently, I am fighting cancer, having found out that my surgery did not “get it all”, and I will likely need radiation(unless we find that it has spread to my bones, which would be worse). It’s a fear, and it is interesting how much I think back to your earlier writings about Anne and her struggle, how much it bothered us and you were very clear that neither of you were sad, that you were looking forward to the next stage of Anne’s adventure. I am not(hopefully)at that stage, but in fact I have been forced to consider my death. If you really have to do that, you will understand that it is a frightening thing. Visceral, almost unwilling, but the fear is there and although I have managed to push it to the background, it is still there. I pray that I will recover fully(of course),but I also pray that I can have that strength of conviction that you and Anne showed, and that I accede to God’s will. It means taking each day on its own, letting those things which seem so important go their own way. My wife and I have more than 40 years together, almost 40 of them as husband and wife. We are not ready for final Valentine’s Day cards. I sense that I have a long time left, but the wish to live can sometimes be seen as the will to live, they are not the same.

    God Bless you, I know that you have accepted Anne’s crossing over, and that takes incredible strength. Thank you.

    Lou

  14. Whitley: I know that you
    Whitley: I know that you don’t mean this entry to be sad, but for many of us it is. We followed Anne’s struggle and hoped and prayed that she could somehow “beat” her condition. Of course it was futile, but also completely natural to hope. Presently, I am fighting cancer, having found out that my surgery did not “get it all”, and I will likely need radiation(unless we find that it has spread to my bones, which would be worse). It’s a fear, and it is interesting how much I think back to your earlier writings about Anne and her struggle, how much it bothered us and you were very clear that neither of you were sad, that you were looking forward to the next stage of Anne’s adventure. I am not(hopefully)at that stage, but in fact I have been forced to consider my death. If you really have to do that, you will understand that it is a frightening thing. Visceral, almost unwilling, but the fear is there and although I have managed to push it to the background, it is still there. I pray that I will recover fully(of course),but I also pray that I can have that strength of conviction that you and Anne showed, and that I accede to God’s will. It means taking each day on its own, letting those things which seem so important go their own way. My wife and I have more than 40 years together, almost 40 of them as husband and wife. We are not ready for final Valentine’s Day cards. I sense that I have a long time left, but the wish to live can sometimes be seen as the will to live, they are not the same.

    God Bless you, I know that you have accepted Anne’s crossing over, and that takes incredible strength. Thank you.

    Lou

  15. Whitley,
    Very poignant,

    Whitley,
    Very poignant, touching. This speaks much about the journey of the soul through life and in the mirror of that, which is what we call death. The emotions, thoughts, and actions we all endure here, whether good or bad seem to reach out and affect those both living and dead. The unsure, the question, we so struggle to keep open is kept open by not accepting death, that we all know is waiting for us. It is in these moments that the heart is filled with compassion and is overflowing with love. May Anne grant you the peace and knowledge that whatever may come is destined for your body and soul.

  16. Whitley,
    Very poignant,

    Whitley,
    Very poignant, touching. This speaks much about the journey of the soul through life and in the mirror of that, which is what we call death. The emotions, thoughts, and actions we all endure here, whether good or bad seem to reach out and affect those both living and dead. The unsure, the question, we so struggle to keep open is kept open by not accepting death, that we all know is waiting for us. It is in these moments that the heart is filled with compassion and is overflowing with love. May Anne grant you the peace and knowledge that whatever may come is destined for your body and soul.

  17. Dear Whitley,
    Beautiful words

    Dear Whitley,
    Beautiful words spoken for such a lovely lady. I loved listening to her diaries. May god bless you and the great work you do and much more you need to do.
    Kerry

  18. Dear Whitley,
    Beautiful words

    Dear Whitley,
    Beautiful words spoken for such a lovely lady. I loved listening to her diaries. May god bless you and the great work you do and much more you need to do.
    Kerry

  19. Whitley you consistently
    Whitley you consistently teach me (and us) how to love more and how to experience more in the big picture; the important things in life.
    I have been following your work for many years now, and can only say in my opinion that i strongly believe you have much much more work to do here in this realm. My heart goes out to you for your physical loss of your beloved Anne, but the gifts that you posses still have not been fully unwrapped by all of us here with you.
    Anyway..just my perspective for whatever it’s worth.
    Love,
    Alex

  20. Whitley you consistently
    Whitley you consistently teach me (and us) how to love more and how to experience more in the big picture; the important things in life.
    I have been following your work for many years now, and can only say in my opinion that i strongly believe you have much much more work to do here in this realm. My heart goes out to you for your physical loss of your beloved Anne, but the gifts that you posses still have not been fully unwrapped by all of us here with you.
    Anyway..just my perspective for whatever it’s worth.
    Love,
    Alex

  21. Whitley, most, most
    Whitley, most, most beautiful. I can’t imagine the last several months, how they’ve been in your life with the loss of Anne, that vibrant, brilliant woman that was far more than a wife to you and you a husband to her. But don’t check out yet! Selfishly I and the rest of the subscribers and the Unknown Country family need you here to continue your work, a hard work, a long road that’s been beset by far more struggle than windfall, yet also full of phenomenal wonder and deepest meaning for you and us. We love you Whit. God bless my friend.

  22. Whitley, most, most
    Whitley, most, most beautiful. I can’t imagine the last several months, how they’ve been in your life with the loss of Anne, that vibrant, brilliant woman that was far more than a wife to you and you a husband to her. But don’t check out yet! Selfishly I and the rest of the subscribers and the Unknown Country family need you here to continue your work, a hard work, a long road that’s been beset by far more struggle than windfall, yet also full of phenomenal wonder and deepest meaning for you and us. We love you Whit. God bless my friend.

  23. Whitley, this diary page is a
    Whitley, this diary page is a poetic gem, and the love that you and Anne shared is an example and a call to all of us, married or not. There is a greatness in it that this poor monk cannot reach, except in a grace of contemplation.
    Your writer’s voice has attained full maturity, and I find, in “The Super Natural”, many clear and graceful pages. The book deserves more than a review — I’ll devote to it several entries in my “ashramdiary” blog. Thank you and Jeff for writing it.

  24. Whitley, this diary page is a
    Whitley, this diary page is a poetic gem, and the love that you and Anne shared is an example and a call to all of us, married or not. There is a greatness in it that this poor monk cannot reach, except in a grace of contemplation.
    Your writer’s voice has attained full maturity, and I find, in “The Super Natural”, many clear and graceful pages. The book deserves more than a review — I’ll devote to it several entries in my “ashramdiary” blog. Thank you and Jeff for writing it.

  25. Poetry Whitley! Poetry!
    I

    Poetry Whitley! Poetry!
    I greatly appreciate you sharing such personal love.
    I love you. I think we all love you. We love Anne too. I try to express her message of choosing Joy! I would like to be better at it. I’m truly sorry that your time is not yet finished here. We do need you, still. If there is anything I can do to make your journey easier please speak it. Otherwise, I will keep trodding on. Don’t give up. Please don’t give up.

  26. Poetry Whitley! Poetry!
    I

    Poetry Whitley! Poetry!
    I greatly appreciate you sharing such personal love.
    I love you. I think we all love you. We love Anne too. I try to express her message of choosing Joy! I would like to be better at it. I’m truly sorry that your time is not yet finished here. We do need you, still. If there is anything I can do to make your journey easier please speak it. Otherwise, I will keep trodding on. Don’t give up. Please don’t give up.

  27. Dear Whitley,
    I read of a

    Dear Whitley,
    I read of a loss. I read of a longing. Words of comfort are not becoming. Understanding the way things happen, is impossible to do. If i was a god, i would grant you a wish. How long it would last is up to you. But i’m sure you understand Anne has important things to do. From the stand outside the arena, Anne barracks, cheers but does not boo. In a twist of irony, like a chess piece she moves you. The crowd stands and roars because they love Anne and they love You.

    I agree: Please don’t give up.
    Si.

  28. Dear Whitley,
    I read of a

    Dear Whitley,
    I read of a loss. I read of a longing. Words of comfort are not becoming. Understanding the way things happen, is impossible to do. If i was a god, i would grant you a wish. How long it would last is up to you. But i’m sure you understand Anne has important things to do. From the stand outside the arena, Anne barracks, cheers but does not boo. In a twist of irony, like a chess piece she moves you. The crowd stands and roars because they love Anne and they love You.

    I agree: Please don’t give up.
    Si.

  29. Whitley, your gift touches
    Whitley, your gift touches our depth, too. Our hearts know the song you write as you invite us to walk with you. We are touched in our humanity and respond with open arms, eyes, and hearts. Our journeys only allow us to want to carry others for a while- to ease their hearts,minds, bodies, spirit. Inevitably, the limitations of the physical realm come to play,

  30. Whitley, your gift touches
    Whitley, your gift touches our depth, too. Our hearts know the song you write as you invite us to walk with you. We are touched in our humanity and respond with open arms, eyes, and hearts. Our journeys only allow us to want to carry others for a while- to ease their hearts,minds, bodies, spirit. Inevitably, the limitations of the physical realm come to play,

  31. and all we have to give are
    and all we have to give are the moments we have known. Moments our souls are able to reach out and touch another with the sweet aroma of love, the joy of a sunrise, the peace of a walk in the forest and the beauty of a life well lived – – -reminding us as you do so well, of the gift of Anne.

  32. and all we have to give are
    and all we have to give are the moments we have known. Moments our souls are able to reach out and touch another with the sweet aroma of love, the joy of a sunrise, the peace of a walk in the forest and the beauty of a life well lived – – -reminding us as you do so well, of the gift of Anne.

  33. So beautiful ~ God/dess Bless
    So beautiful ~ God/dess Bless ~ *

  34. So beautiful ~ God/dess Bless
    So beautiful ~ God/dess Bless ~ *

  35. The energy of deep love is
    The energy of deep love is permeable; a resonant tone that echoes through veils of existence.
    Your longing for her moves through the wax and wane of the moon; the ebb and flow of the tidal sea. The falling cascade of water over a mountainside.
    Song of Beloved you sing and hear-
    A song She sings and hears in you.

  36. The energy of deep love is
    The energy of deep love is permeable; a resonant tone that echoes through veils of existence.
    Your longing for her moves through the wax and wane of the moon; the ebb and flow of the tidal sea. The falling cascade of water over a mountainside.
    Song of Beloved you sing and hear-
    A song She sings and hears in you.

  37. When I read your journal I
    When I read your journal I couldn’t help think back to my own father who struggled for many years after my mum died to come to terms with the loss. Of course he never did get over it. He coped in some way as we all will do when we are faced with such situations. Please take some grace with the fact that your family (both near and far scattered out into the world) listen closely to your every word and published thought on the reality of this crazy world we find ourselves in. And speaking personally, I know I have benefited from be a recipient of the knowledge you have imparted all these years. As long as you are around dispensing you inspirational insights we will be hear listening and loving you for every word. The may appear long right now but you will get to the end of it – all in good time.

    Very best wishes.

  38. When I read your journal I
    When I read your journal I couldn’t help think back to my own father who struggled for many years after my mum died to come to terms with the loss. Of course he never did get over it. He coped in some way as we all will do when we are faced with such situations. Please take some grace with the fact that your family (both near and far scattered out into the world) listen closely to your every word and published thought on the reality of this crazy world we find ourselves in. And speaking personally, I know I have benefited from be a recipient of the knowledge you have imparted all these years. As long as you are around dispensing you inspirational insights we will be hear listening and loving you for every word. The may appear long right now but you will get to the end of it – all in good time.

    Very best wishes.

  39. Death is nothing at all
    I

    Death is nothing at all
    I have only slipped away into the next room
    I am I and you are you
    Whatever we were to each other
    That we are still
    Call me by my old familiar name
    Speak to me in the easy way you always used
    Put no difference into your tone
    Wear no forced air of solemnity or sorrow
    Laugh as we always laughed
    At the little jokes we always enjoyed together
    Play, smile, think of me, pray for me
    Let my name be ever the household word that it always was
    Let it be spoken without effort
    Without the ghost of a shadow in it
    Life means all that it ever meant
    It is the same as it ever was
    There is absolute unbroken continuity
    What is death but a negligible accident?
    Why should I be out of mind
    Because I am out of sight?
    I am waiting for you for an interval
    Somewhere very near
    Just around the corner
    All is well.
    Nothing is past; nothing is lost
    One brief moment and all will be as it was before
    How we shall laugh at the trouble of parting when we meet again!

    Canon Henry Scott-Holland, 1847-1918, Canon of St Paul’s Cathedral

  40. Death is nothing at all
    I

    Death is nothing at all
    I have only slipped away into the next room
    I am I and you are you
    Whatever we were to each other
    That we are still
    Call me by my old familiar name
    Speak to me in the easy way you always used
    Put no difference into your tone
    Wear no forced air of solemnity or sorrow
    Laugh as we always laughed
    At the little jokes we always enjoyed together
    Play, smile, think of me, pray for me
    Let my name be ever the household word that it always was
    Let it be spoken without effort
    Without the ghost of a shadow in it
    Life means all that it ever meant
    It is the same as it ever was
    There is absolute unbroken continuity
    What is death but a negligible accident?
    Why should I be out of mind
    Because I am out of sight?
    I am waiting for you for an interval
    Somewhere very near
    Just around the corner
    All is well.
    Nothing is past; nothing is lost
    One brief moment and all will be as it was before
    How we shall laugh at the trouble of parting when we meet again!

    Canon Henry Scott-Holland, 1847-1918, Canon of St Paul’s Cathedral

  41. Oh my, oh my….
    Oh my, oh my….

  42. Oh my, oh my….
    Oh my, oh my….

  43. Thank you for being open,
    Thank you for being open, openess gives others permission to share and grieve freely.
    Thank you for being in touch with yourself, you allow others to find themselves.
    Thank you for allowing your vulnerability to come through, it allows others to find the seat of their power.
    I am so grateful you can demonstrate power in intuition, flow and receptivity. That is the devine feminine realised.
    Thank you!!!!

  44. Thank you for being open,
    Thank you for being open, openess gives others permission to share and grieve freely.
    Thank you for being in touch with yourself, you allow others to find themselves.
    Thank you for allowing your vulnerability to come through, it allows others to find the seat of their power.
    I am so grateful you can demonstrate power in intuition, flow and receptivity. That is the devine feminine realised.
    Thank you!!!!

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