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When You are Thirty Years Gone
Isabelle5

I was the pond where you learned to swim
 1
and later, after you pulled off my edges
 2
and banks, a creek where wild things
 3
came to rest, to give birth, to die.
 4
 
 
You were a tree, a sapling growing too fast
 5
into the far-away sky, reaching past me
 6
with your swimmer's hands that learned
 7
to grasp and clasp water, not caring
 8
it left you nothing but drops like tears
 9
across your itching palms.
 10
 
 
I became your river, you tried to drown in me
 11
but I always pushed and dragged you
 12
back toward the shore that was our life,
 13
together and apart, tethered and torn.
 14
 
 
You would not root at last,
 15
no nests were safe in your branches
 16
as you sought the wind for release,
 17
you fought the soil (me) that held you securely -
 18
you took it for capture when in truth,
 19
it was your only hold on Here.
 20
 
 
I am your widow, you are alive somewhere
 21
where you can grow and grow,
 22
where you can see beyond your pain.
 23
 
 
Why wasn't I enough?  I wish I could have
 24
taken you down to the bottom of all I was,
 25
drown you the way you wanted,
 26
held you fast, showed you what it meant to me
 27
to lose you over and over, to give up
 28
being your salvation and becoming
 29
only remembered lack of gravity and
 30
arms that held and held and suddenly
 31
let go.
 32

23 Feb 17


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