Eunice Guyre

 

DEAR LOUISE

                                                       

Such cherished memories

come flooding back

as I remember us sitting for hours

composing poetry on your indoor porch

on Prospect Avenue.

“Come Softly” by The Fleetwoods,

played on your record player,

as we penned our words in our notebooks,

happy in our solitude together

as the sun warmed and inspired us.

The mailbox across the street

a true gift, where I could deposit

my daily letters to the boyfriend

I left behind in Jersey City when

circumstances moved me to Ridgefield.

You took me under your wing

and introduced me to suburbia.

You, Eddie B., and I walked to

high school together, even though

I was two grades behind you.

You were beautiful and sophisticated,

down to earth practicing your cheer-

leading cartwheels on your front lawn,

yet wearing your smarts with confidence!

I love how your joy-filled smile made your nose wrinkle!

You became my mentor of sorts

as I watched you prepare for a

date with your special someone,

sitting before the mirror at your vanity table,

carefully applying lipstick with a lip brush.

Your bras were perfectly ironed

and creased down the middle;

the seams of your stockings stretching

precisely along the middle of your legs. Emeraude

by Cody, your perfume of choice smelled wonderful!

You were so involved with all things

in our brand-new high school – yearbook,

sports, and designing the class ring. I followed

your lead, except for the sports and eventually

accepted suburbia as a not-so-bad-place to live.

We eventually lost touch when

you left for college. I remember

being surprised when I heard you

married the boy I had a crush on every Spring,

three years running! Happy it worked out! J

Fast forward to the 90s when

the mailman delivered

“Writing as a Way of Healing”,

a book I’d ordered, to help me

write about my oldest son who died.

I was truly shocked to see

“my” Louise had written the book!

Checking online, I learned of your extraordinary

career as a teacher and writer and ordered

more of your books.

Because I am impulsive,

I found your phone number,

excitedly calling to reconnect

and share with you I, too, had written

two books! You seemed taken aback

telling me you were on your way out

to an appointment. I don’t recall whether

you asked me to call back or that you would

call me… I promptly sent a letter apologizing

for my intrusion, but never heard back.

I was somewhat surprised and

flattered to find myself among

the pages of “Vertigo.” Our high-

school memories are quite different

and so I will read this book again….

We were best friends for a while

and shared many confidences. This

is why reading “Crazy in the Kitchen”

and “Vertigo” comes as a shock. I never

realized the turmoil and hardships you suffered.

But then again, I had my own problems

with “the witch” and leaving my former

home and school so abruptly, and having

to start over at fifteen. Perhaps our

friendship helped save us both.

I still have the gold Italian horn

pendent you gave me all those years ago,

and will cherish it along with our friendship.

I’m also looking forward to reading all of your books.

Rest in peace, dear Louise. I love you, my friend.

 

Bio:

Eunice Guyre considers herself very lucky to have had a friend in Louise DeSalvo.

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