Two prompts today: a love poem and an anti-love poem. Here's the first.
I look across at the pillow next to mine.
Your white hair and blue pyjamas
are beautiful to me, and I love to see you
lying so close, right there. You still have
magic hands when you hold me, healer’s hands.
If I have an ache, you hug me and it’s soon gone.
Always a kind man, you grow ever sweeter
trying to look after independent me.
And you’re right, I should take better care
of myself, get to bed earlier, exercise more.
If one day you leave, I’ll be sorry I sat up late
writing my love for you tonight instead of acting on it.
We don’t speak of it but we both think you might
go first, being older. I’ll miss your physical self
but I know you’ll still be with me. It’s not for me
that I’ll regret not being in bed with you right now,
but because I could have given more loving to you,
more tangible loving, more cuddles and intimate talk.
Yesterday we spent all day in bed together, except
at the end of the day when I got up and wrote a poem.
And it was warming, and tomorrow morning I’ll be
lazing there awhile with you and our cats again. But
I admit it, you do have a rival. My nights belong to
poetry, my first love, perhaps my greatest. C’est la vie.
Submitted 13 Feb. 2013, nearly four years later, for Poet's United's Verse First: Committed. Marriage is a great commitment, and this poem turned out to be (unsurprisingly) prophetic — he is dead now — but my longest-lasting commitment has always been poetry.
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