The Long Farewell


From a painting by John Mackie,1992
The four winds hold you now:
Breathless my heart.
An eagle cries
A sole cloud rises
In a breathtaking sky.

Your face and form able
To cradle me still
This is the long farewell
No short goodbye.

A falling leaf, a broken bough
Blooms drift apart on
Ebbing tides:
A skylark rises
From a meadow of rye.

Your voice and touch lengthen,
To strengthen my will
This is the long farewell
No short goodbye.

Goodbyes were spoken
To sweeten our parting
"See you tomorrow or
Sometime next year"
Unspoken assumption
The next time I saw you
You'd come back familiar,
Consistent and clear.

But Farewell is whispers
For far flung horizons
Ever present, yes, but never so near.
Now I make spaces
For you to be glimpsed in
Transform, disappear.

The cities are teeming with café greetings
Casual meetings, love without fears,
Fragments of song half heard and fleeting
Salt in my mouth and a torrent of tears

The four winds love you now:
Aching my heart.
A vivid dawn
Your presence arises
With the daybreaking sun.

Your face and form able
To cradle me still
This is the long farewell
No short goodbye.


© John Mackie June 27 2006

 
Home More In Memoriam Jacqui Allen