I still feel you
I still feel you in the summer meadows we walked,
and in thoughts that shape
prayers without words.
I watched you
You shone like a cartwheel of light
in my soul.
And, oh, your tired bones
beneath that illusion,
your shape still glowing.
First I ignored your now-body
ranked with blood and fear.
Blindfolded, I passed you by…
then turned back.
Underneath a blank voiceless sky
I felt your heart tremble,
felt its old persistent music.
Beyond logic, beyond hope.
Twitching feet stilled
to the sound of my voice,
your face fell against my shoulder.
A smile lightning you up…
And once again I knew you.
And you died.
It was a day without pain,
though I knew pain would follow,
like an old dog that will never leave.
But it did not matter.
That was the day I decided
to be happy,
thinking that happiness may be
the only thing you wanted from me,
the only gift I can still give you.
How else could you have seen
the dragonfly dancing over the garden pond,
the flash of iridescent blue beneath its wings, quick as a breath, how else
could you see it dart, then hesitate
above the green water,
as if it gave pleasure deliberately?
How could you perceive the sunset
falling between tall trees, that old stillness,
then the vermilion leaves startling
in a call of delight, how could you receive
that golden moment when a skein of geese
across the sky disappeared into the light,
except through me?