When You Smile That Smile

Sometimes something happens that brings what’s left, when all else falls away, to the surface. Like one of those pearls resting in the ocean floor suddenly being loosened to rise up. Exposed. Pure. Treasured.

We had such a time over the holiday season. I won’t go into the details, but I will say that, most blessedly, all is well now. But I’m still holding that precious pearl close.

Over the holidays, my dear husband made me the most beautiful card. He’d painted a cabin scene and wrote the sweetest words. I’d been thinking I’d like to do something special for him this Valentines. Then, most unexpectedly, an idea came from watching the Super Bowl—well, sort of. It all started listening to Chris Stapleton sing the National Anthem. Amazing.

When I was young, I used to listen to a lot of country music in the vein of Don Williams, Kenny Rogers, the Judds, and Vince Gill. It’d been a while but there was something about Stapleton’s sound that made me look him up. That led me to a YouTube video of him singing, “Whenever You Come Around,” at a CMT Giants event honoring Vince Gill. And when you smile that smile, the world turns upside down, whenever you come around. Oh my. Trouble is, though, unless you already knew the full lyrics, you’d miss a lot. So, I looked up the original version recorded by Vince Gill. Beautiful.

And as I listened, I cried. Sometimes a good ole’ country song says just what all the lofty musings can’t. Suddenly, I could feel behind my gray hair, wrinkles, and sagging skin that young woman who could blush and giggle anytime he’d smile that smile. And all these years later, that smile, from across the room, can still make me smile that young woman, yet shy-like-a-girl, smile. So, I wrote a poem for my sweet husband called, “When You Smile That Smile.” I won’t share it all here but will share just the ending . . .

When I was young

I ran fast into your arms

Now I am old

But with just a look

Can still come undone . . .

Cause when you smile that smile

And I feel your heart’s tug

I know I’m forever

Just a young woman in love

I’m aware that there are those reading this who, perhaps, have never felt this way. I can tell you there was a time I didn’t either. Both my husband and I had been married before to very good people and, from those unions, had beautiful children. Eventually, though, it was our fate to find one another and, for me, that smile. But we’ve never, not even for a moment, taken what we’ve been blessed to have for granted.

Or, perhaps, you once had such a love but your loved one is no longer with us. Such is the deep price of love I can most clearly feel now since our recent experience. But would I choose to give up the love to avoid the pain? Never. For the pearl, containing both in the darkness of the ocean floor, when it comes into the light, knows only love.

And on this Valentine’s Day I’m remembering too that there are different types of love because, as they say, we’re each a spiritual being having a human experience. True. Many of you have read my books, poems and other writing spilling out my love for God.

But, today, I’m most grateful to my beloved God for giving me this life, this moment . . .

to simply see, one-more-time-please that smile . . .  

the one that instantly makes me . . .just a young woman in love.


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12 responses to “When You Smile That Smile

  1. Carolyn Tobin

    Made me smile and cry at the same time 💕

  2. Deborah Farrow

    So very lovely.

  3. Ahjan

    That was a very moving rendition of the National Anthem, I agree. I have listened to it again, even broader and more deeply once I got past my own country music biases and learned that he is ‘woke’. I always cry when I hear the Anthem and pray for the well being of our nation. But that is besides the point of your writing, or is it? I can feel that same expansive Love that you share with your sweetheart when I sit in that vibration. I am grateful that you both have been given to us. I am smiling. Happy Valentine’s Day you two!

  4. camilla sanderson

    Sending love to you both 🥰💖🙏🕊😘

  5. Alexis

    I smiled and cried – so touched by your words. And I will share them with my own dear husband.

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