|"Halo Repair" by Brian Kershisnik|
My exquisite hazel-eyed wife has no sense of style. Absolutely no feel for fashion. She asks me, a reformed punk rocker and an ignorant boy, if her clothing matches, if her outfit “goes.” She did not know that brand names existed until she was in high school. I think I could count on one hand the number of clothing articles she has bought for herself since we got married almost ten years ago. She almost never wears makeup and happily lets our children go out in public wearing things that somehow got sucked from the 80s into some mysterious hidden river of time, eddying the edge of eternity before surfacing in my children’s closets. Of course, I mean this as highest praise. How does a person come to be so unattached to the things of the world, so unconcerned, so secure in robes of light? “Who can find a virtuous woman? For her price is far above rubies. . . . Strength and honour are her clothing; and she shall rejoice in time to come.” My wife is poetry. She startles wonder. She elevates me from my common ways of approaching reality, awakening me to the potential of being. She offers a new way to see the world, to be in the world. She transfigures existence.
“Therefore I say unto you, Take no thought for your life . . . nor yet for your body, what ye shall put on. Is not the life more than meat and the body than raiment? . . . And why take ye thought for raiment? Consider the lilies of the field . . . even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these.”
Who care about clothes? Jesus and my wife ask. Let’s all be small Saints Francis, walking away from the world, buck naked and confident in God. This must be where my toddling daughter obtained her aversion to clothing. Her mother was a little nudist as a child, too. There is another covering, more resplendent and lovely: “And above all things, clothe yourselves with the bond of charity, as with a mantle, which is the bond of perfectness and peace” (D&C 88:125). Jesus said that God would clothe us as He does the grass of the field if we seek first the kingdom. Julie pointed out to me the other day that God keeps His word. Bags of hand-me-downs appear on our doorstep like handkerchiefs from magician’s hats. Because my wife trusts God and loves beautifully.
“What are these which are arrayed in white robes? And whence came they? . . . These are they which came out of great tribulation, and have washed their robes, and made them white in the blood of the Lamb. Therefore are they before the throne of God, and serve him day and night in his temple: and he that sitteth on the throne shall dwell among them. They shall hunger no more, neither thirst any more; neither shall the sun light on them, nor any heat. For the Lamb which is in the midst of the throne shall feed them, and shall lead them unto living fountains of waters: and God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes.”
She draws joy from her unfashionable pockets, light is her gift. God be thanked for my unadorned, unabashedly gorgeous helpmeet.