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(July 14,1943 / Newport, Rhode Island)

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Lovers You Have Known

The one you could not wait for
so you went ahead
as children do in the snow
to make fallen angels.
The one who did not come
though you waited, faithful
as a widow on her wind-swept walk.
The one you stayed with
but who left anyway
long before the actual parting
as a poet before his reading in a great hall
departs to places you cannot reach.
The one you met in another life
but is now too young or betrothed to another
and to you Platonic, so gone anyway
before you touch.

The one whose thought you never grasped
elusive, impetuous, not suffering fools
of whom you numbered one.
The other one you grew beyond
like a frangipani breaking the rock
cleaving her sweet disposition.
All the ones you never knew
like unpanned gold in a stream
that flowed through all your dreams.
And the last one: sullen, fretful
like a once-favorite shirt
too tattered now
to wear outside the house.
This last, the one you are.

Submitted: Thursday, February 28, 2013
Edited: Wednesday, September 04, 2013


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