As two years arrive before your anniversary
Mostly I think of you, my darling,
With love and gratitude
Yet sometimes I am overwhelmed with sorrow.
I am so sorry, darling.
I am so sorry.
I regret every word that caused you pain.
I know I did.
Three times those last few years you dissolved
In desperate tears.
I regret the full weight of my personality
That sometimes fell on you
My moods, my melancholy, silence, and withdrawal,
Sometimes preoccupation, dark concern.
You knew sometimes what I was feeling
But sometimes not
And you always blamed yourself
All things wrong under the fierce and burning sun
(As in your prints “Ash Wednesday”)
You took upon yourself.
Yet it was I so often wrong.
While you –
You so successfully kept from me your sufferings
Your “bleak clouds,” your dark discouragements,
You never wanted me to feel the slightest weight,
You tried so hard never to complain
Never to burden any other with your inner pain.
You almost never did.
And then you blamed yourself for that.
Regrets are useless, dear, I know,
You can no longer brush away my own
With warm and living fingers
I cannot kiss away your salty tears.
And yet I remember all the sly smiles you gave to me
The awe you sometimes showed in coming to me
The way you held me close.
I used to love so much the ducking of your chin
When you spoke to others fondly
You tried to hide that shy smile of yours.
Sometimes then your head tilted back upon my shoulder.
It cannot be that long, it can’t!
Will you wait for me, my love?
Will you wait?
How long it is,
How far the road
Stretches out ahead.
—Michael (April 13, 2011)