Category Archives: love

The Open Perch (written for Amy before she came into my life)

I imagine her as a bird. All silver in her feathered finery as she flies over landscapes reduced in size like a topographical map.

Where she is coming from I cannot say. But where she is bound, the far distant perch that calls to her like a guiding star . . . ah, there’s a thought that brings up a smile!"I imagine her as a bird…"

For hers is a journey that could take her across continents, lifetimes, even the universe for all I know. While here I wait in the crow’s nest of my solitary life, watching for a woman whose features I won’t recognize but whose heart I will know intimately with the certainty of a lover.

And in truth I am not waiting, but also flying in my soul to meet her, a journey that has taken me across the span of my own lifetime and the gulf of that same mysteriously mapped universe.

I cannot say when she and I last met—in what former life, in what manner of relationship. We could have been brother and sister, parent and child, even lovers in a doomed marriage. But in this lifetime we have passed through each other’s night skies without taking notice, living our lives apart while slowly and inevitably being drawn together like planets falling into each other’s orbits.

Now, it is time for us to meet and I know it. Just as she must know the same truth within her own heart. What a beautiful illusion this is. What pride the Master Magician must feel to see us flying towards each other while the watching world believes us stuck in our lives, trudging across the same mundane existences we trudged across yesterday, and all the yesterdays before.

But no measure of time or distance truly separates two kindred spirits. What matters most is the rightness of the moment not the limitations of physics. What matters most is the urgency of two hearts to once again be joined.

And so I feel her presence. I sense the shadow of her wings as it glides across my soul’s landscape as certainly as I sense fragrance from flowers and moisture in a mist. We are flying towards each other through a sky free of cloud or obstruction, both of us unable to resist the accelerating pull of love’s gravity.

In a world where the laws of physics have been superseded by the inevitability of attraction, time no longer holds sway over possibilities; yet ironically it has somehow become the right time for this cosmic connection to be made. The right moment for her to find me and for me to find her.

I imagine her as a bird. Flying with a certainty known only by an arrow truly shot or a soulmate heading for the open perch in her lover’s heart.

She is flying to me. And I am flying to her.

Two souls who, in the perfection of some unwritten Grand Plan, will once again become one.

Love, I am waiting.

 The above flight of fantasy appeared in “How To Train A Rock”, my book of ‘short insights and fiction flights.’ And was brought out to ride the winds of destiny once again in honor of Valentine’s Day. Hope you enjoyed!  “How To Train A Rock” can be purchased at

Pretty White Gloves II (A Real Story)

A friend wrote me in response to “Pretty White Gloves” with a story of her own. I offer it here to hopefully provide my readers with the same inspiration it offered Amy and me. I’ve changed the names of my friends to Susan and Marshall since, not surprisingly, my friends were too modest to allow their real names to be used.

Dear Paul,

A very moving story. It especially touched me as Marshall and I had an experience just this morning arriving home from D.C. on the all-night Amtrak train. A fellow passenger, a very obese woman with a 9 month old baby in a carrier with a handle, struggled to gather herself, a suitcase, numerous bulging bags and her baby as the train pulled out of the Back Bay station. She began to cry…she had missed her stop. Then they announced that it was 7 degrees in Boston. We sat watching for a long painful moment. Then, no longer able to just watch, we offered to help her, wondering—as I am sure she was—what was she going to do. She said the baby was all wet, she had peed on her blanket. So she threw another blanket over the baby, actually covering the baby’s head as well. The baby cried and she shouted at the unhappy infant. I noticed that the mother didn’t have any gloves. I offered her mine which she refused. So I just put them in one of her bags and said she might need these. Anyway, to make a long story short, we eventually called the conducter who joined us in helping her get off at South Station, and he hailed a red cap telling him to get her a cab to North Station so she could get to Back Bay. Marshall stuck some money in her pocket.

We wondered if she ever made it and also worried about the baby, and wondered about its future and the condition of the mother. I cried as she slowly trudged her way along the platform following some distance behind the red cap. Your story certainly brought back the memory of this heart-wringing morning so vividly and with such sadness.

Your writing was powerful, and compassionate.

Thanks, Paul, and for giving me the chance to tell you about our experience.


Thank you Susan for sharing your wonderful story! And for reminding us how possible it is to be true to a vision of our best selves.

When Mary Wed Abby

(Celebrating Six Years Of Romantic Justice)

The water is wide, I can’t cross over
And neither have I wings to fly
Build me a boat that can carry two
And both shall row, my love and I

Once, long ago, they charted different courses and followed different stars as they sailed toward their destiny and ever closer to each other. Neither knew the other would appear along the way like a treasured companion once lost and now found, nor that all of us—a church filled with friends, relatives and well-wishers—would gather to celebrate and honor this love they had shared for seventeen years.

There is a ship and she sails the sea
She’s loaded deep as deep can be
But not as deep as the love I’m in
I know not how I sink or swim

Theirs was a voyage and a love affair not embarked upon lightly. Two women whose intentions of the heart broke society’s rules of acceptable behavior with each smile and tender thought that passed between them. Now, no longer guilty of some unnameable crime, no longer forced to hide their love as if it were shameful, no longer barred from rites and privileges held high and unreachable by a world so myopic it could only recognize the most ordinary of love’s many guises, they came to our church to sanctify and solemnize their bond.

Oh, love is handsome and love is fine
The sweetest flower when first it’s new
But love grows old and waxes cold
And fades away like summer dew

How the heart overflowed to see their faces lit with joy and, yes, the nervous uncertainty of brides. How like brass horns welcoming home a host of angels did the words of the brief ceremony cut through the darkness of our separate lives to feed our hungry spirits. We were there to celebrate life and love, and to bear witness to two lives joining as one. There was no place in this centuries-old sanctuary for fears or concerns about hateful people, peevish politicians or homophobic religious groups. Such negativity could not be kept at bay indefinitely, but it would not find itself a welcome guest at this particular wedding.

The water is wide, I can’t cross over,
And neither have I wings to fly
Build me a boat that can carry two
And both shall row, my love and I

Now they are wed. The two are joined as one. And the voyages they chart, the waters they navigate, will from this day forward be mapped out on a single axis. A few short years ago, no one could have predicted we’d gather today to celebrate their marriage, in a church that has seen marriage vows exchanged hundreds of times in its 329 years. And though something profoundly different happened this morning, something also remained profoundly unchanged. So that one day, perhaps, with the sharp vision hindsight often brings, it may seem less significant that two women were married this day than that love, once again, overcame all obstacles.

Build me a boat that can carry two
And both shall row, my love and I
And both shall row, my love and I

Copyright ©2004 Paul Steven Stone
“Water is Wide,” traditional lyrics

Next month we celebrate the sixth anniversary of legalized same-sex marriage in Massachusetts. I wrote this commentary at that time to celebrate the wedding of two women who, after years of sharing their love on the fringes of society’s acceptance, were now allowed to step openly into the center where all God’s children belong. I am proud to live in Massachusetts where even in our imperfection we sometimes get it right. This was one of those times.

Tales Of The Book Part Three


“So when something from the outside touches you and seems to bring happiness…?” you ask playfully. “Something like a songbird?”

“You must learn to let it sing, and be grateful for what you are given. As soon as you try to capture it, or own it, or demand more, it’s like catching the songbird in your hand. How easily you can squeeze the life from a songbird when you try to capture its song.”

“How sad,” you say, your voice filling with regret. “To kill the very thing you love by holding it too tightly.”

“Yes, it is sad,” I agree. “Very sad. The moral of the story is to look to yourself for your happiness, not to others. Which means looking to yourself—and yourself alone—for whatever love you need. Learn that lesson or spend the rest of your days squeezing the life from each songbird that flies into your world.”

From “The Songbird And Me”, one of many ‘Short Insights and Fiction Flights’ to be found in “How To Train A Rock” by Paul Steven Stone, available on For more info, check out or

Tales Of The Book Part Two


Love, like rain, is no less pure
because it falls upon one gender or another.
It’s not same-sex marriages
that deny the essential nature of love,
but those who would tell the rain
where it can and cannot fall.

From “Love Is A Many Gendered Thing”, one of fifty Short Insights and Fiction Flights to be found in “How To Train A Rock”, by Paul Steven Stone. Available on