Thomas McKenzie
by grace alone


Thomas McKenzie's Blog.

I Sent a Birthday Card

I sent a birthday card
by Thomas McKenzie

If I had not married such a kind and thoughtful woman
no one in my family would ever receive a card from me.
Not for Christmas, or Mother’s Day,
and certainly not for Birthday.

But this year I planned ahead.
I thought about this birthday card.
I pondered it, considered it, meditated on it.

A week before his birthday I went to the drugstore.
I searched the aisle.
I dislike the joking cards, the wordy cards, the kitty cards.
I don’t want an expensive card or a cheap card.
I want a simple card, a solid card.

I bought the card from the man behind the counter.
He wore a blue uniform
and his name tag said my name.
Thomas it said, though he looks nothing like me.
I took the card home and I hid it.
My folded socks kept it warm.

Three days until his birthday, I retrieved it.
I sat
at the kitchen table
I thought
what should I write?

I wrote a card to him
I told him to have a happy birthday
I told him I missed him
and wished I was with him
as I was last year
at his party.

I told him I love him
but I always told him that
and he always told me the same
so we both knew it
but I wrote it anyway.
It must be written.

I sealed the card and drove
to the post office
where I stood in line
so I could buy
a single stamp
which I affixed to the card

I stepped out to the table
near the mail slots
to write the address

But what address do I use?
What would the mailman think?

To my father
Robert Haigh McKenzie
care of Amarillo, Texas

I mailed the card to him
It was on time
No one reminded me to buy it
or write it
or send it

He will never read it
but I needed to send it.

happy birthday
all my love
your son