We met at an SCBWI conference in Racine, Wisconsin. Her daughter Roxie introduced her to me. After our our lovely chat, we became pen pals. For almost two decades, we exchanged books, letters, and cards. Letters from Kenosha were always on Florence's signature blue stationary decorated with a border of simple figure drawings --in red. She always used words like happy, joyous, or cheers. Usually, she tucked poem inside. We both hoped we would meet again. But we never did. I will miss my pen pal, Florence. And we will all miss looking forward to her new books.
I caught a glimpse of time last night
as time was passing by --
So quick! So bright! so beautiful
Stay! I cried.
The echo came: goodbye.
Florence Parry Heide December 2001