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Apology

Lawrence Walters 1941 (Illinois)



A fallen Rose, its petals stout,
Lay on the garden floor.
A victim of a summer storm
It seemed to be no more.
A grateful hand then picked it up
And trembling at the sight,
Gave comfort to the rose that day
And long into the night.
Tho’ grateful for the tender touch
And spoken words of praise,
The Rose remembered oh so well
The Storm of recent days.
wrapped its windy arms around
And forced the Rose to bend.
And breaking, fell upon the ground
Where petals might not mend.
Tho’ safe within another’s arms
The Rose was injured still,
And only tenderness and love
Could take away the chill.
The Grateful Bearer of the Rose
In spite of well-meant care
Placed the Rose upon the shelf,
Admired its beauty there.
But then the Rose began to speak
With tenderness and care,
Words that came from deep within
A heart that longed to share.
” Remember, I am still a Rose
In need of special care,
For unattached to stem or branch
I can’t be happy there”
“If loving me is what you do
Then you must do your part,
To put me in a special place
That mends my broken heart.”
“For if you place me on the shelf
Where petals dry and break,
What matters well-intentioned heart
If mine is left to ache?”
“Rethink your plan, and if you can
Be what I need you see,
And I will stay your freshest Rose
For all Eternity.”

About this poem

I wrote another poem when Carol came to Portland before we were married. I fixed dinner for her, and we had a disagreement (probably about some wedding plans.) When she left, I wrote this heart-felt poem I called “Apology,” and I emailed it to Carol. She had it in her email by the time she arrived back home an hour later. (Needless to say, she forgave me.)

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Written on May 02, 1996

Submitted on June 24, 2021

1:15 min read
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Lawrence Walters

I am 80 years old. I was raised in a small town in the 50's. I served twenty-one years in the Marine Corps as a Maintenance Data Analyst. I was a Marine Corps Base, Camp Pendleton, California, Champion horseshoe pitcher in 1980. In 1972 I was among twenty-six Marines selected (out of 180,000 Marines to attend Palomar Junior College on the Marine Corps Associate Degree Completion Program. I obtained a Batchelor of Business Administration from Chapman College in 1978. After my retirement from the Marine Corps in 1980 as a Master Sergeant, I spent ten years as a Senior Claims Adjuster for Safeco Insurance in Spokane, Washington. As a Bicycle Advocate, I worked with local governments and law enforcement agencies to design bike lanes, in bicycle accident investigation, and bicycle rack construction and location. I directed a Bicycle Transportation Alliance in Spokane, Washington. As the Bicycle Safety and Education Director for the Bicycle Federation of Washington State, I worked with state legislators and the Bicycle Lobby to complete the 1991 Washington State Bicycle Bill. I was a Veteran bicycle racer for thirteen years, winning both road race and trial state championships. After retiring from racing, I toured the US by bicycle and led bicycle tours. As a League of American Wheelman Bicycle Safety Instructor, I taught safe cycling to both adults and school children. I ride my recumbent bicycle (even though I am "confined" to a wheelchair.) After I rededicated my life to Christ in 1995, I was active in Men's Ministry, served in church offices as Council, Board Chair, and Treasurer. I re-entered the work force as an Insurance Inspector in 1995. I served as the Administrator for Helping Hands Homeless Shelter, I was an avid skydiver, completing seventy-two free falls. I was diagnosed with Parkinsons Disease in 2003. I have written an (unpublished) book, "Stop the Anger - The Fourth Generation,”), and a pictorial paperback about my four children, entitled “Passing Thoughts Along the Way.” My wife, Carol Ann and I were married in 1996. Carol is the most wonderful person in the world and is also a wonderful care-giver. I stand in awe of the wonderful life God has blessed me with, as chronicled in my latest book, “Counting My Blessings.” I am currently contemplating my next book. more…

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