"Dawn and Twilight"
by John McAuley
There used to be four of these lights--two in our bedroom and one in each of our sons rooms.
Our oldest boy, Joshua, died in 1991. He was a long way from home when it happened.
When they sent him back to us Jenny and I agreed to place the light in his casket because he'd always been afraid of the dark. It was a symbolic thing I guess, but it made us feel better.
Our second son, Kevin, was killed last month. I wasn't home with Jenny when the young soldiers with tight faces and immaculate uniforms came to our door again.
Kevin wasn't afraid of anything--but when we buried him we did the same for him as we'd done for his brother.
Jenny's wasting away now. I think she's ready to leave. But I'm not going to let her go alone like our children had to.
The last two lights will be out before morning.