while you were away

i will die while you are gone.

time and again i have begged the black away, 

knowing you were too near. 

i could not bear you to see.

i knew you would call me back, and 

because i love you

i would return from something beautiful

to this perpetual wait. 

don’t fuss. there’s bread and meat for sandwiches.

and the laundry is pressed and folded.

i’ve chosen a dress for the burial, and a hat.

the girls will take care of the makeup.

skip the repast. 

i made your bed and left mine undone.

i thought you might like to lie there, a bit, and imagine

me lying in the space across from you.

sometimes, deep in the dark, i reached for you

and i could almost feel you reaching back.

the way i felt your eyes caress me

when my back was turned,

the strength of your arms

the time you hugged me.

you will wonder what to do with your time

now that i cannot tell you how to fill it.

i thought about staying.

i knew you would be angry if i chose to leave.

were my bones young and my mind lithe

and the air crisp and full

i might stay awhile.

but it is winter.

i know you don’t like to think of it.

but it is winter now and sometimes

the sun fools us into thinking winter will pass

and leave us untouched.

it will not.

you will have me here, even if i am empty

so that you are not at last alone.

so i will die while you are away.

i will wait for you, just beyond the veil.

come when you are ready.

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