Cheryl L. DaytecYañgot
Long Wait - Poem by Cheryl L. DaytecYañgot
You clasped my hand during the last call
“Wait whatever happens. We have it all.”
I will never forget that wink you gave me before
You disappeared behind the large waiting door
To ride on the wings of a World War II plane
See the world outside, then come back again
To shake off the gnawing sadness within
I waved even if you could not see me then
For the first time, your son kicked in my womb
You were gone, I realized; it hit me like a bomb
Like a busy leech, I fiercely held the ground
So you’d find me if you chose to turn around.
Our house welcomed me back with sympathy.
Nay a portent of doom, I started eagerly
To wait as I promised; I’d think of nothing else
Birds came and went, a fish became extinct
The moon altered its shape more than a thousand times
Not once did I stop singing our secret rhymes
Your son’s voice changed; he grew beyond my reach
He knew of your existence – there were the wooden crates
From across the miles- filled with everything but you
One day, he quit asking when your return was due
But I waited even when you married over there
I had to wait. “Whatever happens, ” did you not whisper?
I am bound- a promise is a promise; it is none other
Your son became a man, my head a riot of silver
The wooden crates kept coming- they kept hope alive
I waited for years; what’s twenty more or twenty-five?
For even birds that wander far across the wide oceans
May linger but always fly back to their native lands
Today, I heard of your death on the other shore
Tomorrow, your fourth wife will bury you there
Here I am- sad, grieving for all it was not worth
It just hit me- I am so old, so sapped of mirth.
You clasped my hand during the final boarding call
I waited, waited whatever happened for no one at all.
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