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A Love Story ©

Thomas Matthew Edgar
Melbourne, Australia
1985

I hear the rushing of the leaves
along the gutter,
as I walk hunched,
head bent against
the gusting wind of Winter.

The anguish of lost youth,
and dreams unfulfilled
wells bitterly in my throat.
I walk despondent
from nowhere of special interest
to my rendezvous with oblivion.

The hard smooth surface of the bottle
in my pocket is my friend,
my only friend...
Synthetic dreams will comfort me
on my bench beneath the tree-
an ancient oak that's seen it all.

It must be Sunday,
I hear the bells from a distant church.
People with smiling faces, in groups,
friendly banter,
smiling,
more smiling.

I've been to church,
I'll go no more.
The memory of "To thee I pledge my troth",
the warm intervening years,
then the final brutal parting,
"Ashes to ashes, dust to dust...".
That's what I know of churches,
I'll go no more.

The mindless fury of my loss has long subsided,
but the words...
"It is better to have loved and lost
than never to have loved at all",
echo in my mind.

I wonder...


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