No one really understood why Rowena was so fond of the rose garden, but every day she would walk from her sheltered-home apartment across the busy main road to the park and sit there for a time. Even in winter when the gardeners had pruned the bushes to bare stumps with thorns.

People walking by were sometimes surprised to hear her talking to herself and even laughing.

One morning the gardeners arrived early and saw a young couple sitting on the bench chatting, laughing – then fading away.

Somehow they were not surprised to learn Rowena had died in the night.

E.M. Swift-Hook

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