With you here, stars sprinkled glitter around me,
swirled under my feet, lifted me up
in a strong, steady, tender wind of love.
Your eyes twinkled back at me,
when I glanced your way,
pulling that glance into a gaze
that held me, would not let go.
When I closed my eyes, I saw your face,
every line etched, every dimple placed
surely in my mind, locked in my memory,
held, tightly bonded, incapable of being erased.
I will never forget.
That’s what I thought.
Until you left.
The glitter stopped swirling around me,
the stars went dull,
all of the glimmering sparkles disappeared.
My legs felt weak,
pain stabbed at my heart,
then split me in two. Behind my closed eyes
there was only empty space:
I could no longer see you.
I rummaged, frantic, through boxes of pictures,
desperate to find something to help me remember
the architecture of your face.
Of course you were there, but only for moments,
flickers here and there that I could no longer hold,
the details had blurred into tiny fragments
of fleeting memory, just a trace.
Then one day, I was shocked, ashamed, to
find myself smiling, even laughing:
had I forgotten you? Betrayed you?
The grief is there, but has dulled with
the compassion that time brings.
©Janet Mitchell, December 2011