I Should Have Asked All the People I Loved

(Note: Poems beginning March 20, and some in April, 2019, deal with grief. Return to writings prior to March for poems of a different nature.)


If only I knew what was your favorite

star, or flower, river or tree,

poem, or hymn, or memory,

then I’d have riches to count in the spring—

rivers to sail, songs I could sing.


If only I knew how you lived with disease,

with heartbreak or failure, and loved ones leaving,

with parents passing—your aching, grieving,

how you were buoyed by your faith, your believing—

how like a soldier you kept on living.


If only I’d seen the place you’d be buried,

and understood why you wanted to be.

Now I know that you’re nearby a stream,

or behind a church, or in my dream—

or a garden, or beneath an old apple tree.


If I could be certain you still feel my love

sure as a star that shines in the dark,

then I’d be ready to live with my heart,

to face any minute or day apart—

to wake like the sun—to walk, to start.









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