Beyond Departure

I knew by mid-January that you weren’t going to stay –
that all your promises of forever were being swept
back into those very connections you so desired
to escape from. Even you did not want to admit
that though. More and more, you became no more
than just a guest here, instead of an inhabitant;
at first in ways so subtle as to confuse both heart
and mind – but still, they were real and I felt
the shifting sands begin to break apart
beneath my feet, as our foundation of love
began to crack and slowly crumble
under the strain of all the weight
of your past, returning to you then,
as always it must until resolved.

I kept hoping though, that it would prove to be
no more than just a passing phase of growth –
concomitance of our future being
somehow regrounded anew. So I chose
to believe your many words and phrases,
repeating themselves into my ear
in tones that felt so real, at least just at
that moment they were spoken; and to
focus on those moments when still
we were able to share love.

More and more though, I felt you drifting
back into your old life, as time went on.
I railed now and then against the vast
unfairness of it all. I used every bit of energy
that I could gather to myself to try and find
a way to make it work. Plan upon plan,
reasoning within rationalization, I presented
all these things to you as best I could.
You rejected it all though, never stopping
long enough to even consider
the implications of where your nature
was driving you to again, or why.
And so you simply let it go, a little
at a time, this love of ours.
Yet every time you did, I felt
a deep and poignant pain.
Why didn’t you...?

Two more months went by, within
those extremes of love and ambivalence.
With every passing exchange between us,
each communication, even all of those
that were left unspoken, yet garnered
in a touch, my heart cried out in silence
"You must defend yourself!" But alas,
I couldn’t then, for the greater part
of my own strength had somehow melted
into you; and the longer you were there,
the more depleted I became. And I felt
this vast confusion, for reality and truth
had split apart. I realized, a week (or
was it two or three?) before you left, that
the greatest portion of your best energy
(which by then was also mine) was being
spent by you and sent by you right back into
that past of yours that you’d never really
separated from yourself, or mourned
the loss of.

I attempted, in so many ways, to tell you
all of this, even then, but it all seemed much too
complicated to explain or for you to understand;
and you were already so caught up "elsewhere,"
that you did not even seem to hear a word I said.
Your past became a wall that stood between us,
and finally, in the week before you left,
I managed to begin a breaking free from
that overwhelming feeling of that unreality
that your focus on elsewhere kept bringing
somehow into me. I began to make my own
decisions again then, for I had no other choices
left at all. You’d made it so clear by then that
I would never be a priority in your life.

You began, even before you left
to withdraw your deepest self from here,
even then expressing a sorrow for each
of the loving moments we had shared.
Your tears seemed so out of place to me
at that point, in my unknowing state
of choosing to believe in our love and your words,
even then, when you had given up on all of it,
but yet untold to me. Still, your impending totality
of departure was beginning to bleed itself
into the very air and atmosphere I breathed.

And oh, the many momentary lies
that you conceived then, still wanting
every precious drop of love that you
could get from me. Where once I’d felt
that love returned from you though, then
I only felt an increasing sense of impending
utter grief, but the why of this was still confused
in all the words of love you gave to me.

By then, I hardly slept at all by night,
for the only time I could even begin
to make sense out of any of it, was
when you slept. You resented that, too,
even that little bit of personal freedom
that I sought for myself while you were here,
and your growing resentment of me
hurt me worse than anything else you did;
for I felt it, yet you kept denying it. And I had
spent my every energy loving you by then,
every day, in every way I could. Perhaps,
this then, is the crux of my mistaken attitude,
that I had not withheld enough of my own love
to keep me going, as yours petered out,
spent again on all you’d said you’d left
behind for good.

‘Twas then the end began, as you left me
and returned again, so many times, in so
very many ways, at so many levels. Near the end,
in the course of nine short days, I was left reeling
by the ferocity of your movements. But you
kept telling me that you were coming back home
to me, returning on that eighth day – and I clung
to those words, that last promise of yours to me,
as a drowning person would cling to a float.
You returned then too, even if not quite the way
you’d promised, and one last time you convinced me
to pour all the love I held inside into your being.
That done, you lingered for a while, projecting
yet more of your sorrow into me, which still I
did not understand at all, for hadn’t you come
back home to me as promised? Just before
you fell asleep that last night, you finally told me
that you were moving out for good.

No discussion, no communication, no hint from you
that this had been your plan for weeks already,
if not longer. You shattered me completely that day –
just tore my world to crumbling bits and pieces.
By then, having vented the worst of your many
emotions into me, you fell asleep. Now under
the brunt of so much pressure that had been yours,
that somehow was blowing itself apart
inside of me then, adding so much weight on top
of my own feelings, of course I couldn’t sleep,
no matter the early morning hour we had reached.

And so I chose to walk, out into the indigo,
even as the fading starlight was bringing
the morning dew to form again. I couldn’t think.
To try to feel it all at once just then would surely
have killed me; and so I walked, I sought release
in physical movement. I was in what most
would call a state of shock, but as my body
moved itself, one emotion, clear and powerful,
began to rise through the fog of unreality.
And my own voice came back to me, so clear
and unadorned was its simplicity of truth.
And I knew beyond a doubt at that moment,
that nothing I could say or do would ever
be enough to change your mind. My rising
anger was all that carried me through
in those last hours. One emotion, the last bastion –
it kept me from collapsing entirely then.

It brought me to my home again
and I woke you up - you who slept
so peacefully on my couch as I was left
to feel the consequences of your unspeakable
and uncaring decisions. Without regard,
I made you leave, right then and there,
for I could no longer tolerate your presence
that sought no more than to destroy me then.
I literally threw your possessions toward the
door then to get you out. And you threw them
then, into your car and quickly drove away,
without so much as a word of goodbye.

Unknown to you, my burst of anger spent
on those last moves you should have taken
on yourself, I crumbled to the floor on my knees,
crying out in such pain that I am surprised,
looking back, that my neighbors didn’t wake
and call 911. If they had, I would have gladly
gone and let the doctors medicate me back
into numbness. But alas, no one came at all,
to help me through, not even you. I tremble,
even now, as I write this, remembering those
feelings – the utter sense of hopelessness,
despair, emptiness, pain beyond measure.

I knew not where to turn except to my own
daughter then. I’d helped her through a
similar onslaught from a man she’d loved
as well as I’d loved you, and she remembered,
and so came to me to return the gestures then.
She helped me hide or throw away the few remnants
of you still in sight, that would only remind me
that you had been here. She even helped me
change the bedding, so that when I finally
dropped exhausted into bed that night,
at least your scent would not be lingering there
to make me feel even worse. She reminded me,
so poignantly, of all I'd faced before, and lent me
that same strength that I'd lent her. She is the
only one, even now, who understands.

I have since then, more often than not, used anger
to keep you at bay, as on and off you tried
to redeem those distant connections with me that
seemed to enhance you, even as they
depleted me, even as your soul cried out to mine
in pain for a response. It is as if you can still sense
my weaker moments, even though you are
at such a distance from me now. I think
to myself, that now that you are back
in that past life you chose as your future,
it must again be happening with you;
unsatisfied with the place you are at,
you again seek no more than escape.
I see lately too, that your thoughts and focus
are again reaching for this place instead of that,
even as you reached for there, while you were
here. I wonder too, how long it will be,
before you find another time and place
and face in which to unburden yourself.

But alas, I cannot be with you at all,
while you are still so divided within yourself.
My life must be here, within myself, of
my own creation once again. I need
all of my loving energy here now, to bring
this love into being for myself again. I have
mourned, deeply and already too long, the loss
of your love in my life. Youth is no longer
on my side or yours, and something inside of me
tells me only this, that I must move on - without you,
for I cannot do your mourning for you.

Whether you understand this now,
or choose not to, I will do what I must do,
even as I pray for loving intercession
from sources beyond the power
of understanding. My life is my own again,
as ever it needs to be, and yours is yours,
every time you choose to make it so.

I see more and more how you keep choosing
though, a life prescribed for you by so many others.
Through our time together, I felt your soul,
struggling to break free. For a short time, it did,
you did. Why you choose now to imprison yourself
again, I never wish to understand. You must struggle
with that question inside yourself alone now, and
find your own answers, as moment by moment,
your life lives you on, with or without your consent.

I see in retrospect now, just where the truth
was twisted into misalignment, as I allow
within this letting go, my soul to view the whole
for me. And I know deep in my heart, just this:
my love was true. I only wish this truth
had been yours too...

? Michaelette ?

Copyright© 2001 Michaelette L. Romano
All Rights Reserved
Take me home...