First, an Introduction
I know my stories are often dark, often sad, maybe even scary or depressing. A writing professor once made it clear to me (because I had no clue at the time) that my stories involving children — like Adeline or Charlie — are not stories made for children. They were rather serious, indeed: involving deep questions about life, where we come from, and who we are. Even my latest creation about a barn, an inanimate object, is rather emotionally set.
But, if you stop to enjoy any of Mieux’s antics, you realize I am not all seriousness. I love the lighter humor and happiness in life. The little things, as they say. As a child and even now, my family is very huggie. In school, within my group of close friends, I was frequently the beginning and end of our hugging sessions. Yes–hugs were sessions, to say the least: we were a group of first four, then five, then, by the close of high school, almost a dozen close companions who ended most (if not all) lunchtime, break time, and any interval between with heartfelt hugs. The hugging better start and end swiftly, lest any of us be late to our class! By graduation (and surely, long before then), we had these sessions timed and coordinated down to a surgically precise science.
I’m a huge fan of hugs and I am convinced that adults simply don’t hug enough. (It is good for us, after all.)
Following is a silly, semi-short poem about a boy named Justin Hugg. The first verse popped into my head as I was falling asleep about a month ago; I woke myself and typed the verse quickly into my smartphone so that I would not forget to revisit it later on. (Unfortunately, many more writing revelations are lost to sleep than are typed into my phone.) I admit, it’s not my best work, but it is lighthearted and fun and, though silly, points to a (dare I say?) serious concept: love and how we handle it. Do you take chances on love? Do you show your love for life, for people, by the simple act of hugging? Perhaps we all ought to follow young Justin’s lead more often and take a leap — nay, a hug — of faith when it comes to giving away our hearts, whether it be to pets, friends, neighbors, strangers, or romantic interests. Which leads to the question:
Have you hugged any today?
There was a boy named Justin Hugg
who’d hug everything wherever he was.
He’d hug a tree, he’d hug a bear,
he’d even hug his dad’s armchair.
But one thing he never did hug
was a girl in class who he so desperately loved.
One day that girl, who was exceedingly fair,
let hang down her long, brown hair.
She combed and preened and let her hair flow
as she untangled it out with a big pink comb.
Justin watched and was ever so begrudged
because with her he wanted so badly to hug.
Alone in his room later that night, Justin was sad
thinking about this girl and along came his dad.
“What’s the matter?” his father did ask.
“I’m in love with a girl I can’t hug in my class.”
The dad did chuckle but consoled his son’s sorrow,
then said, “Let me tell you what you should do tomorrow…”
So good Justin listened—so intently he did!—
as his wise father gave advice to his kid.
Then, on the morn, Justin Hugg was excited
for today with his love he would be united.
His heart did pound as he skipped o’er the ground
planning and thinking about how their love would abound.
Then came the time for Justin Hugg to take action:
t’was noon, lunchtime, and plenty of distraction.
So into the girl’s backpack dear Justin did slip
a little handwritten note with a rose paperclipped.
He dropped it in a pocket and did so deftly retreat
before the girl and Justin Hugg’s eyes could meet.
During next class hour the young girl did find
the note her mysterious love left behind.
She pulled the note out in excited unease
avoiding detection by any kids who might tease.
She smelt the red rose and read, carefully scrawlen,
the confession of the boy who for her he had fallen:
“Dearest Samantha Brown,” she read (the note started off right)
“I adore you daily, from morning to night.
You are so lovely, you outdo this rose,
and smell so much nicer than it to my nose.
Please permit me just one special hug.
It is the one thing I’d so desperately love.”
There was no question who the note was from
so sweet Samantha decided his request should be done.
Once home that day the boy she did meet
because she knew where he lived—just across the street!
She tapped on his door and soon Justin answered,
sweaty and nervous and vastly enamored.
Without a word said, the girl opened her arms
and Justin jumped in, overwhelmed by her charms.
She smelled so, so pretty; her hair was so soft.
His heart was ablaze; his head was aloft!
It was a glorious hug—a thing to behold!—
no hug was better in all of the world.
Not moments in, the whole thing was ended.
Justin Hugg smiled stupidly, “That hug sure was splendid.”
Sweet Samantha blushed, giggled, and as she departed,
shouted: “Oh, Justin Hugg, you are so soft-hearted!
Exceedingly kind; indeed, a gentle boy.
But I admit to deception. Now truth I must employ:
“That note you gave me—I wrote it last week!
I couldn’t approach you, you are too shy and too gentle and meek.
So to your father I showed it and this plan we devised
to get me to hug you in careful disguise.
I have always thought you were a sweet boy
and now we have hugged. What a happy, lovey joy!”
She ran to her house and the front door she closed
then ran to her room and to her diary disclosed.
On the page she scribbled down in delight
the wonderful thing and plan that had gone right:
Dear Diary, she wrote, Today Justin gave me a hug.
It was the first and best hug of our meant-to-be love.