Elizabeth Boyd

writes from Harpswell, Maine.

​The Green-striped Downy Comforter

What reminds you of “going home”?

He stood alone at the back entrance of the church, the winter sun shining on his weathered face. His shoulders were slightly stooped, his white hair and beard neatly trimmed. He reached for the handle of the door. Should he go in?

It had been a long time since he had been inside a church. Life had been hard. His wife had left him a few years ago, and he and his 16-year-old son shared an apartment overlooking Portland’s harbor.

Starting a new business after retiring from the Navy wasn’t easy, but it wasn’t the ex-wife, the wayward son, or the change of life work that weighed on his stooped shoulders. It was the nagging, empty place in …

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