Ex-lovers’ vows


Grief; yes.
Analysis; of course.
But the Escher path says only,
“It is. It is. Just accept it.

“Or don’t. It’s up to you.
Be warned, though: bitterness and regret never once
turned back time.
Except to eat up memories, turn them foul;
belch them back in your face, distorted.”

So here is my pledge. Here are the promises
I will try hard to keep, however hard it may be.


I will not say or do things that make you feel bad or guilty.
I will not weep in public. I will not spout vengeful poetry. Sympathy,
solicited, does not heal. Guilt resurrects nothing.
I will try to reflect, rather than ruminate.
You do not deserve to be hurt.


I will not trawl back through previous conversations, quote your words,
question your consistency. Your feelings now require no justification. They are
as they are, and that is all that they can be. If I do look back,
I will try to do so in fondness only. We were good. For a while, we got it right.
I will take pleasure in recalling a thing done well.


I will avoid making sweeping generalisations from us to my world at large.
You are not responsible for anything outside of you and I. My past loves
my past loves. I will not be passive-aggresive. I will not put you into a box
and label it with a number, shelve you in the newest slot in the entrance to my house.
I will celebrate the memory of us. I will add you to the flavours of my life.


I will never regret the knowing of you, the loving of you.
You have enriched me; you have made me more complete.
You are part of me now, for the rest of my time.
And I am glad of that.

These are my vows.
In return,
permit me those odd moments
when I recall the touch of skin on skin
and think of what might have been.
Permit me to keep on loving you
for as long as the need is there.

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