Tea at Five on the veranda,
Biscuits, crumpets, scones, and cakes,
Icings, jams, and marmalades,
White lace doilies, china plates.
One lump or two, my dear?
Or perhaps a glass of sherry?
Sit back, relax, savor the sweets,
Let your thoughts be free and merry.
The view from here just will not end,
The horizon far away,
The sea as calm as a mirrored pond,
Such a lovely, lovely day.
Now, tell me how your day went,
And I'll tell you of mine,
Leave nothing out, my dear,
This is my favorite time.
But first, another spot of tea,
I'll pour; that is my pleasure,
No, wait - perhaps some sherry now,
To more enjoy our leisure.
Another tea cake?  I believe I will,
You know, I chose this kind for you,
Oh yes, I'm well aware, my dear,
No other kind will do.
Look!  Look!  A tiny ship!
Way out there at sea,
Remember when we cruised like that?
Long ago - just you and me.
Recall the funny, little stateroom,
Barely big enough for us?
Remember how you teased me?
You said I must lose some weight ... I must.
But you're the one that lost the pounds,
That first year you were sick,
You worried me to death, you know,
The weight fell off so quick.
I would have traded places,
In an instant, if I could,
But that was not to be,
My wishes did no good.
But then when you became so ill,
You still insisted on our tea,
Every day at Five O'Clock,
On the veranda - you and me.
I tucked a quilt about you
To ward off the chilly ocean breeze,
You objected and protested,
But I knew that you were pleased.
Oh dear, there goes that little ship,
Out of sight - not out of mind,
Quite like you, my darling,
Yes, visions stay behind.
Well, for now, I'll close my eyes,
And sit here and dream some more,
My tea has grown cold now,
It no longer warms me, as before.

Virginia (Ginny) Ellis
Copyright April 2004