Frank V. Gardner

Rookie (2 December 1922 - / Washington, D. C.)

This Time, You Come to Me


All through our lovely married life
I've had to go away.
And it was always you, my dear,
Who was back home to stay.

It wasn't my own choosing,
But the Government, which said
That I must leave my family,
And sacred marriage bed.

The FBI was first to pry
Our soothing arms apart.
And, each time I returned to you
With ever swelling heart.

The Foreign Service, next, attempted
Separate our arms.
But I was not to be denied,
Returning to your charms.

I came back to you every time,
From places I can name:
Tegucigalpa, Honduras....
Pronounce it just the same.

Then 'international conferences'
Descended on our life.
The separations that resulted
Could have brought some strife.

The OAS had quite a meet,
In seventy and four:
The farthest from you I had been,
Yes, Quito, Ecuador.

And that same year Geneva had
Some orientation;
Then on to Spain to bring our daughter,
Karen, 'home in one.'

The 'Law of Sea' then intervened
In seventy and five.
Considering that travel,
How did our love stay alive?

Again it was Geneva with
One month between our touch;
But you have that memento in
A lovely pendant watch.

Ensuing year, the 'Law of Sea'
Did do us in again,
By interrupting annivers'ry
Five and ten and ten.

The time I spent in New York town,
One hundred fifty days,
Had left me spinning like a top,
And kept me in a daze.

In seventy and seven it was
'Law of Sea' once more;
But, just to help with my replacement:
Help him keep the score.

So, three short trips up to the 'Apple, '
Only ones I had.
In retrospect, then, I must say,
That year was not so bad.

And now the year is seven-eight;
Again, it's 'Law of Sea.'
Again, I'm in Geneva but
This time you come to me.
Before, I've always gone away,
And you, the one to bide.
This time you close the distance,
And, my feelings, I can't hide.

You've come a long way, Gerry, and
May our reunion be
The best that it has ever been:
This time you come to me.


(May 1978, Geneva, Switzerland)

Submitted: Sunday, January 09, 2005
Edited: Friday, March 30, 2012

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Comments about this poem (This Time, You Come to Me by Frank V. Gardner )

  • Rookie - 679 Points Birgitta Abimbola Heikka (4/10/2014 10:09:00 PM)

    Lovely poem. Very heart warming. In Stanza 5, line 2, did you mean “from places I can’t name: ” Like the way you write the years; especially, five and ten and ten (makes one think) . Don’t know what you mean by the sentence “left me spinning like a top.” (Report) Reply

  • Rookie - 396 Points Cat Hodgson (4/10/2014 6:07:00 PM)

    It is sad when one has to leave family to make a living, Done too often. I job is always the third person... Good writing, it seems like there is a reunion that is good.. Cat (Report) Reply

  • Gold Star - 4,840 Points Savita Tyagi (4/10/2014 11:03:00 AM)

    This bond of love and marriage is an inspiration. Wonderful write. (Report) Reply

  • Gold Star - 21,435 Points Gangadharan Nair Pulingat (4/10/2014 3:48:00 AM)

    The close affection and love of the poet to his family but the limited opportunity to live together seems to be the theme behind the poem and shows the difficulties of a responsible officer who is bound to live away from his home long time on account of his official responsibilities. The poem is written well to understand to a reader in its spirit. (Report) Reply

  • Rookie Evan Haase (4/10/2012 9:36:00 PM)

    Wow very emotional i wouldn't survive over those days (Report) Reply

  • Rookie Mary Nagy (1/9/2006 8:40:00 PM)

    What a reunion that must've been! What a love story! This is beautiful. You and your wife are an inspiration. Sincerely, mary (Report) Reply

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