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A man from the past

The moon had barely risen above the

Horizon as storm clouds began to gather

In the west. Distant thunder alarmed the

Still night air, and a sudden swirl of leaves

Gave notice of change.


There was something in the feel of her hand

That night, holding mine yet somehow seeking

To retract, had I said something, forgotten

Something? I didn't think I had, yet her fingers

Spoke of reproof. Her lips normally warm and

Yielding, were still and cold, colder, much colder,

Than I had ever kissed before, butterfly busy,

Anxious to get on and be gone.


I held her to me and knew then that I was not

The one. We stood in the moonlight each waiting

For the other to speak, knowing full well that when

Words did come they would cut like a knife, A knife

Forged in the heat of distant lightning that lit a tear

On her cheek.


Finally, words melted into whispers as I held her

For the last time, I blamed myself at first, how

Could I let this happen? Am I a lover or a fool and

With what weapon do I cudgel fate? But love I now

See has no time to linger, nor can it be ruled, so I

Stood aside, a man from the past, who loved her

Dearly, and always will.


© Joseph G Dawson