Grace is a rare gift. I didn’t have it. There is purity in the light and the blaze makes me feel dirty. I have made my sanctuary in the shadows.
Whitney made grace look easy. Her little hands folding small miracles in the crinkle of paper until each crease were a dignified art.
Then, from the garden of a blank surface, Whitney would bloom a daisy. A daisy as perfect as a thornless rose. Her technique never repeated nor faltered.
Whitney repeated this process each day. She never reached for the comfort of scissors or the security of glue. Whitney yielded her craft with the absolution of a feathered quill in the hands of a poet. Each daisy was a work of her finest literature.
Once she was finished, Whitney would leave the security of the table and make her way outside. I watched her in the spades of light from the kitchen window. She would skip up the hill behind our house. Her precious feet kicking a geyser of dust and pebbles with each step she took.
I would wait in the warm rays of the kitchen window until I saw the silhouette of her shadow. Whitney would bounce through the door absent of the floral of her precious paper.
Whitney never spoke about who she gave her daises to. Whitney would only hum and sing.
“I’ll make more. I always make more,” Whitney declared.
One day, I heard Whitney humming as she was finishing her accumulating art.
“This is my last one. This is the last daisy, I don’t have no more.”
My curiosity was a thief and stole the hand of Whitney’s privacy as I followed her up the hill.
She stopped under the shade of weeping willow. The branches swayed secrets in the soft kiss of the wind.
“I miss you, Daddy,” Whitney said as she skipped down the hill.
I touched the warm granite of the memorial:
My daughter, Whitney, had made me a beautiful bouquet in the promise of paper daises.
A little girl has an interesting art.