Frances Gregory is a long-time professional librarian and teacher in Washington state. A Bahá’í for over thirty years, she has served the Bahá’í Faith in various capacities and particularly enjoys teaching children’s classes. Her favorite activities include reading, writing, exercise, travel, singing, and live theatre. Her two sons will be finishing college soon. Gregory says that “This poem flowed out of me very easily in one long night and the following morning, right after finishing the Wilmette Institute course on Thinking of Relationships and Marriage? and while facilitating a Ruhi Book 1. Concepts from the marriage class, from Book 1, and from other Bahá’í quotations are included in the poem.”
To my future husband
We build our marriage with patience, form
A fortress for well-being, warm,
Strong, solid, immovably laid,
Assembled together, day by day.
Stones set close, with careful handling
Building layers, levels standing,
Checked for justice, equal angle.
Trusting our partner does not fail.
Trusting our structure to prevail.
The first level, friendship, fun
Tactfully and gently won
With graceful action, choosing better,
Building hope and trust together,
Courteous words and selfless deeds
Foundation’s truthful, cooling breeze.
The second level, difficult
With discovery of weaknesses is built.
Cracks sealed or allowed to crumble.
Conflict causes stones to tumble.
Do we forgive or let them fall?
We choose to build a stable wall.
Third level, character grows.
Layers unveil and build upwards,
Resentments fall, no longer fenced.
Trust cements to confidence.
Joy, compassion blend in one.
We set our best within each stone.
Final level, choosing us.
Union eternal, impervious
To aggression’s rain and ice,
Protected from bright lightning strikes,
With consultation unified.
Linked together, smooth walls rise,
Cool to touch, yet warm inside.
Solid stones arc high above.
Together built, a tower of love.