OF LESSER THINGS
Tonight I think of you with great tenderness
I sweep aside the rubble of our years
to see you clear of their shadows
Tonight I remember you without passion...tenderly...
as a runaway child is recalled on the eve of Christmas.
All the beliefs and customs ignored
The rules we by-passed, we scorned the wisest counsels
And perjured ourselves just to stay in love.
I hear you whisper like tiny feathers in my ear
Clicking off the years until that old moment
In a strange land, only to be together and alone
When you were glad of my arms
And we were lost in an undeserving world
Where the weapons were gold, guns . . . a missionary
As innocents succumbed to threats and promises
In that place where we could never belong.
I cannot tell you who we would have been
I am a poet, not seer or evangelist
I cannot see the shape of tomorrow
In the patterns of tea leaves
Nor read prophetically
Between the lines of a dream.
I am condemned to the lesser things
Of bread and love, hope and resignation.