Monthly Archives: November 2012


For Justin


A man handed me a candle

Light it he said and walked away

I had no match so I put the candle in my pocket

I carried the candle there for a long time

One day I met a man

He had a flame

He carried his flame in his hand

Said he had been carrying it a long time

I told him I had a candle

I took my candle out of my pocket

He held out his flame

He lit my candle with his flame

Together we walked

My candle held his flame

His flame lit my candle

For a long time we walked together

Then one day he could walk with me no longer

My candle still holds his flame

Valerie Prather

May 13, 2011




On October 18, 2003 I got married. It was a wonderful day! I had a pretty dress and family and friends and the man I loved standing beside me. This year would have been our 9th wedding anniversary. The day went by mostly unremembered. I was dealing with my sick cat and some pretty low feelings. But I think I am finally ready to share a few things. Justin was sick when we met. He was on dialysis for kidney failure. I loved his ability to accept his illness and live anyway. It wasn’t easy for him, he had to be hooked up to a machine 3 days a week for several hours at a time and he always felt crappy afterward(no surprise there I’m sure). Despite all this he worked and laughed and he made me happy.  Justin received a kidney transplant a year after we got married. I was thrilled! He was moderately excited 🙂 2 years after that we had our beautiful daughter. Life was good. In late 2010 Justin started feeling sick again. In January 2011 he died. Our marriage wasn’t perfect, but then I never expect perfection. We had our problems. What couple doesn’t? I still wish for more time. The truth is that even though I am hurt and angry at his loss, I still thank the powers that be that we had even that short time together.