Monday, June 10, 2013

Love and Poetry from days long past . . .

"Jesus replied: 'Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: Love your neighbor as yourself.'" (Matthew 22:37-38)

"Many watercannot quench love; rivers cannot sweep it away. . . ." 
(Song of Soloman 8:7a)


How often we use this word in our extravagant society. 

I love God, my husband and my children. Oh, and I also love these shoes, this coffee drink and lululemon. 

Wait, what?!!

How can I say I love God and coffee in the same breathe?

I don't want the true meaning of love to get lost in all my daily exclamations. 

I don't want my God to be equated to my love of things. 

I want my love for God to reign SUPREME in my heart!

This topic is on the forefront of my mind as my thirteenth wedding anniversary is fast approaching. 

My husband, Adam, the second love of my life (God being my first love) and best friend, has been part of my life for eighteen years. 

Eighteen years . . . crazy. I almost can't remember life without him.

As I think of my two great loves, I do not want my silly use of this word to lessen my or my children's understanding of true and pure love.

The other thing that sparked all these thoughts in my mind was this precious poem my mom sent me yesterday. I want to share her email and the poem my great-great-grandfather wrote about his beloved wife with you, my amazing readers!


Suzanne, I just came across this poem written by my Great-Grandfather about his wife who had died shortly before their move to Palo Pinto County. Your writing talent comes not only from your father, but from your great-great-grandfather Lease, who was my father’s grandfather. Although he probably had only an 8th grade education, he expressed himself very well.  My grandmother Bonifield was very young when her mother died. They were moving from a farm in Dallas County to Palo Pinto County where he started a lumber yard.  


J. W. Lease: Birth 4 February 1844, Death 2 March 1923
(Written as he did with spelling and punctuation errors.)

In moving from Dallas Co., Texas 1880 to Palo Pinto Co., Texas We had the misfortune to loose a box of goods, So I had no thing left of my wifes pictures But an old tintype picture took at sixteen years of age.  So from this I’m writing the following lines

My Wife’s Portrait

Painter can you paint a picture
Of a girl I used to know
Eyes of hazel, hair black,
Cheeks of ripened, ruddy glow!

Can you paint her standing
In the open door for me?
Paint her just as evening sunset
Floods the woods with ecstasy.

Painter can you paint the love light
In those eyes of sparkling wine?
Can you place upon your canvas
Glances that were whole mine!

Can you paint her lith and girlish,
Yet a woman through and through;
Standing in the open door way
Bathed in the sunset’s golden hue!

Painter can you paint the likeness
From this tintype of my wife!
Can you paint as I see it
Looking back over my life?

Can you get the thought and spirit
Of the river we used to row,
And the bubbling brook that gurgled
Like stream of sparkling hue?

She was girlish, her hair was black,
And the tintype is very faint.
Can you catch my inspirations,
And transfer them to the paint!

Can you paint an angle painter.
As I prompt your master brush!
Can you paint a woman sweeter
Than the song of a woodland thrush!

Painter can you paint a picture
Of a girl I used to know?
Eyes of heaven, hair of sunset,
Cheeks of ripened ruddy glow.

Can you paint the girl I married
With the sunset around her head?
Can you paint from this old tintype,
A likeness of my dear wife dead?

Painter can you paint her
As she would say o’re and o’re,
“Husband children live faithful
And meet me on that golden shore.”

Painter can you paint her
As her head on the pillow lay.
With her eyes looking upward
To that bright and happy day?

Painter paint it as my heart beats;
Paint as she stood that night;
Paint with the golden sunset
Blended with the evening light.

Paint her beautiful and childlike;
Paint her beautiful sweet and fair;
Paint her just as she will greet me
When I meet her over there.

By J. W. Lease



  1. Suzanne, thanks for sharing. Amazing love

  2. This is a sweet post Suzanne...and a beautiful poem. What a lovely painting it would have been.
    I love this photo of you and Adam! The colors are great and the two of you look wonderful!




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