This poem is shared in memory of our dear “little” sister, April Renee Ball (WVU ’84) who passed away on Aug. 30, 2017. You may read her obituary here.
When, from St. Mary’s Hospital
Sparky returned home in the snow,
she carried with her
the scarlet-faced baby
that forever, to Mickey and me,
would be Little Sister.
Walking home from school with you
from first grade on,
I thought would last forever.
But then I chose a path in 1974
which, to this day, remains a mystery.
On a return trip home you smiled away
as the speakers in my orange Beetle
blasted Uriah Heap against your ear drums.
In time you found a man
I considered worthy – as if it mattered.
Together you gave me two of my best friends –
your daughter, your son
my niece, my nephew.
Though separated now by timely death,
apart physically but present in spirit,
the bonds of love between Little Sister, Big Brother and Big Sister
are held together by memories,
and our dearly departed Mother and Father.
With a prayer of joy and a tear in my eye,
I daily thank God
for January 10, 1962.
© Michael M. Barrick, 2017