Sitting in Michael's Lap
"Two parts of one," we always said, when any wondered
What magic held us close in love so many seasons;
No end to me, nor start to you – no sooner sundered
From you than I would be from breath – no better reasons
Than love and hoping fueled our fire, in ample measure:
But wealth of kings could not proffer
A richer treasure.
My dearest friend, who held my secrets in his keeping,
Who knew the wounds that haunted still this tangled spirit;
Who whispered an "I love you" when he thought me sleeping,
Each night for sixty years – and each, I smiled to hear it –
While many seemed to grow apart while growing older,
My favorite place to rest my cheek
Was still your shoulder.
We were the force unstoppable, the flame undying;
Though demons danced and angels fell, still we persisted:
And threats of failure never held us back from trying –
We met the challenge hand-in-hand, and double-fisted.
From disappointment and defeat emerging stronger,
For such would just postpone success
A little longer.
The children came as children will, with wonder brimming --
Infusing everything they touched with life and laughter –
We watched them as they grew, our fire never dimming,
And helped them to believe in happy ever after;
We spun the twofold thread not even Fate could sever
And wove it through the tapestry
That spans forever.
But Time is an unyielding foe, a brooding cancer,
Who weights with age the youthful legs which once were agile;
And knows the way to steal the dancing from the dancer:
The twofold skein reduced to one is doubly fragile.
Where Fate had faltered, Death prevailed, with chilling fingers:
Yet though your hand is gone from mine,
Your vision lingers;
Now every breath awaits the shade who stole the living
From out my life; who claimed the essence of my dreaming –
Pernicious Time has proved a victor unforgiving,
Who dulled the eyes which once with love for you were gleaming --
Yet though your flame has cooled to ash, and mine to embers,
You'll burn forever in my soul:
The heart remembers.
Full fathom five thy father lies,
Of his bones are coral made,
Those are pearls that were his eyes;
Nothing of him that doth fade
But doth suffer a sea-change
Into something rich and strange...
--William Shakespeare, from The Tempest