The Vine, Spring 2024

The other evening I was listening to my streaming playlist and having a great time when a familiar electric piano riff by The Guess Who started playing. I went from happy to sad in an instant. I always liked Burton Cummings and Randy Bachman, and “These Eyes,” written in 1968 about the loss of a lover never to return, was a great song. The words, “These eyes cry every night for you … these arms long to hold you again,” got me thinking about the beauty in my life and how I’d feel if I lost it.

Beauty is in the eye of the beholder, but I do love dark brown hair and blue eyes. That is one reason why I married Phyllis. I met her in typing class and we were married five years later. When these eyes met hers, I fell in love. To me, she is beautiful and perfect.

If we don’t want to end up like Burton Cummings singing the song of lost love we must be prepared to repair a damaged relationship. Building a happy, healthy partnership takes work. Leaving issues unaddressed is the fastest way to trouble. We must take full responsibility if we are at fault. Keep the romance alive. Go out to dinner or just spend some intimate time together. Talk, talk and talk some more — and please laugh! I mean really laugh. Hold hands, hug, kiss and snuggle. We took dance lessons and, man, it worked. I am not Burton Cummings singing about a lost love. I am on the other side of the record, appreciating a love that has remained — and grown. 

So look into each other’s eyes and hearts and make it last forever. Just so you know, I will not be listening to this song for a long, long time, believe me. I think I will hit the skip button next time and listen to the Doobie Brothers instead.

Top image: Rod and Phyllis, together since 1971 (background by Ioana Ursu from Getty Images, via

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