Passing By

I pass by your shadows each morning,
stepping past trees that have lived
for centuries, dull grey bark
with a capture of history
that magnifies the present,
the here and now.
And history, sometimes, wakens
the mind to possibilities,
the look of a face distinct, the gait familiar,
the simple sounds of language acknowledged.
I have seen you before, twenty years ago
when you said you had to leave,
when you went away.
Now such absence aggravates the sense
to the point of madness,
wild eyes gathering in images
that will no longer do, my history
over years ago,
this present a gentle affirmation
of what there once was,
the common bond of affection
uniting, our eyes moulded
into permanent gazes
that saw nothing but each other.

But now, time having passed,
there is a sadness language
cannot save, the faltering voice,
the unsteady mind of fiction venerate,
this that comes as conversation
far too late, too old, too stubborn
to remember, the past having
long since gone to somewhere
strictly private, nothing there to be seen,
the flap of your raincoat torn
as you walk away silently.

John Cornwall

If you've any comments on his poems, John Cornwall would be pleased to hear from you.