Friday, June 2, 2006

"More than words"

Zenella looks lost at the door of the disco. No one she knows is in sight. I am standing by the door watching her as she looks around for friends. Her hair is still wet from swimming, hanging down in the braids Mrs Zen put it into that morning.

She finds E, her best friend, and immediately becomes animated.

I am overwhelmed by my feeling of love for her. I love her more than I have ever loved a woman; more than I would ever have imagined was possible. How do words, humble tools that they are, rise to describing it?

They cannot. Love is not expressed in words but in the fond look of a father who sees the joy in his child's meeting a friend, in the warmth that her smile brings, in the gentle touch of his big hand on her small forehead when she has a fever.

Sometimes, on a cold morning, when Mrs Zen is already up with the twins, Zenella comes into my bed, looking for warmth. I feel her cold feet in the back of my legs and I know this is what love is: to be the safest place my child will ever know and for those few minutes, feel there is no better thing.


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