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But If You Will

If you will watch the sunset with me, I will
tell you something. I know
what I’m asking; you and I
have grown up in these mountains.
It’s the heart of winter, cold and wind
and dead fingers despite the gloves.

But if

you will come with me, to the highest
hill – you know the one, with all┬áthe
Indian flowers up the south slope –
we can sit together in companionable silence.
We can fill the cold with leaning on each other,
and half-smiles, and bursting out with old memories
we both can finish.


must come with me. I need
an old friend now. The troubles of today
can pass and we can talk about who was who
and why and how and try to remember
when. That’s all I want. The winter sunsets
are familiar to us, with their brilliant edges
on the clouds and subtle shading above and behind.
I think you told me once
they were like rose petals.


you come then? The sharp, cold clarity
of that mountain winter is nothing to us.
Its icy fingers cannot dispel our history so fast.
There is a warm clarity to our friendship,
where we rest in the security
of love for a long long time.
No polite small talk, no awkward silences,
no wondering where we stand. It will be
just you and me.

Come with me,
and we’ll set our warmth
against the cold.

12/30/2008 – Dedicated to my best friend Sierra, of course.

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