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If you hadn't gone

by Vikki Owens

If you hadnt gone away,
If you hadnt taken all your comfort
and your discomfort,
all your bloodwork and pleasantries,
I might have hoped for a little more,
might have given in,
might have mended bones that were used to bending.

I might have started sentences with I, might have
spoken in first person, instead of fragments of
might have had a thought for someone other than you.
My vocabulary might have expanded beyond
simple noun and verb.

If you hadnt gone away,
If you hadnt signed your letters 'gratefully', or 'regretfully',
sending them postage paid to an empty address,
or if you hadnt sent me your best wishes, your hopes and dreams, your smiles and X's and O's,
then maybe,
maybe then I would not have taken to wandering in the
stationary stores, motivated by the cardstock,
the quillpens and inkwells becoming foriegn novelties to me...
I might have become more than lines, more than a quick jot, more than what you fold and place back in the envelope,
to a drawer,
to a shoebox,
to the back of your closet,
I might have been more than communication across a distance...
might have been.

If you hadnt gone away,
hadnt taken all your love and compassion, your tendency toward
violence and sweetness, cold expressionless eyes,
if you hadnt taken your time, and given in to forgetfullness, given in to silence,
I might have taken to finding myself alone.
I might have taken to loving completely, fully.
I might have grown, I might have become someone other than

'love always.


Posted on 02/03/2005
Copyright © 2023 Vikki Owens

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