Tiny Pineapple

ananas comosus (L.) minimus

Be Honest With Yourself: The Long and Short of Marriage

Be Honest With Yourself: The Long and Short of Marriage

The Long and Short of Marriage

This is a picture of an idea — and an ideal.

It is a picture of two fine young newlyweds — a tall, handsome, wholesome young bridegroom and a sweet not-so-tall young bride. They have stars in their eyes — stars of eternal hope and happiness.

But the artist intended to suggest to us far more than this. He has here painted the dreams of every normal, healthy young man and young woman — a dream filled with a honeymoon, a happy home, laughing, loving children, faith, trust, honor, achievement — all these and a never-ending love and life together.

Ask any starry-eyed newly-wedded couple how long they want their marriage to last, and the answer will come easily: “Forever!”

Forever? Do they really mean forever? Not to end in divorce court as thousands of American marriages now do? Marriage till death? Yes, that long and longer — for even then separation forever would be tragedy.

Theirs is the hope of eternal living and learning and loving together — an ideal — an eternal “togetherness” of parents and children in the old hallowed patriarchal pattern, consecrated and enriched by the blessings of a loving and eternal Father in Heaven so long as love and faith and fidelity shall endure.

There you have it: the long and the short of marriage. Which will you choose?


North Country Nurse

by Robert Ackworth (1965)
North Country Nurse

Lovely young Mary Loring, her nurse’s training behind her, came home to the north country for two reasons–one, to help the people in this vast wilderness land; the other, locked in her heart, to work with young Dr. Ken Shannon who was coming back here to start his practice.

But when Ken stepped off the plane, beside him was a beautiful, titian-haired bride. Now Mary wanted only to escape — from this man she could never have, from her beloved north country that would always remind her of him.

It took a startling confession from Ken, and a danger-fulled mercy flight with a devil-may-care pilot named Eddie Garrett, to show Mary that she didn’t have to run away–that a girl doesn’t always know the secrets of her own heart…

There’s a lot to love about this book. First, there’s the cover, with Nurse Mary Loring’s crisp white uniform seemingly unaffected by the ash and soot spewing out of the blazing inferno behind her.

Second, the blurb on the back, which gets extra points for the use of the term “titian-haired bride.” (“Titian,” by the way, means “bright golden auburn.” I had to look it up. And let me tell you, it’s a sad day when can’t read the blurb on the back of a romance novel without having to break out the OED.)

But the absolute best thing about this story of a woman who has dedicated her entire life to improving the health and well-being of others is that deep within its nicotine-stained pages is a full-page foldout advertisement for cancer sticks.

True Cigarette Ad: Doesn't It All Add Up To True?

Nurse Kathryn

by Peggy O'More (1968)
Nurse Kathryn

She turned to a brilliant young doctor for help and found true love as well.


Psychiatric nurse Kathryn Kilburn could read most people like a book. An emotional problem in someone else was something she could heal.

But when her fiancé constantly avoided marriage, she had to face the hidden truth about herself. And brilliant Dr. Lamont reached out to help her…

This one’s for you, Kate

Private Duty

by Faith Baldwin (1947)
Private Duty

The Problem Was Romantic

She thought she knew her own mind. Three years’ training at Updale had taught her more than to sign her name “Carolyn Cutler, R.N.” But now she was a successful nurse on private duty–and her problems were far from medical. They were:

Dr. Livingston: Carolyn had idealized him while she was in training. In fact they had considered themselves engaged. Now she wasn’t sure whether she loved him as a man or as a surgeon.

Derek Williams: Carolyn’s employer–a young widower. Her love for him contained a strong mixture of pity.

Bill Hamilton: Impetuous, red-headed playboy. His only claim to fame was a long series of breach-of-promise suits. To Carolyn his actions were dubious, his charm devilish.

The three men were quite a problem. They all wanted to marry Carolyn.