A Year Ago Today by Tobias Maxwell

I could never pride myself with the desertion
We undertook. There were no dues collected
From some lonely-hearts society. You simply
Left, almost mumbled your goodbye behind
Your guarded tears, your foot still swollen
From schlepping all over Manhattan that last night.
Your visit marred by dubious points worth noting:
Valentine’s Day and Central Park by moonlight,
Strolling the deserted Village Streets before
Reaching Soho for the most legit of our fights.

From your end, the final split brought you relief,
From mine, some misguided conclusions.
[Not to mislead: I still hate us.] For not realizing
What could have been, for not making a go of it
With what we had, for simply not being persistent.
Which is to say I blame you for not resisting the fray,
For giving up halfway. Now with a year to hold
What we had—thought we had—up to the light,
Everything has changed. You have a lover,
Young and male, and I have a wife, who—bless
Her soul—gets tired of my reminiscing over the life
Lessons of my previous breakup. Still, she comforts
Me, reminds me of the roles we get to play in life,
While I acknowledge, in silence, that we all lost out.
Photo by Josh Hild on Pexels.com

About the Poet:

Tobias Maxwell is the author of two novels, Thomas, and The Sex and Dope Show Saga; a novella, And Baby Makes Two; three memoirs, 1973—Early Applause, 1977—The Year of Leaving Monsieur and 1983—The Unknown Season; and a poetry collection, Homogium.  His material has appeared in, Balita and Mom…Guess What Newspapers, in The Gay & Lesbian Review Worldwide, WorldsLA Edge, Art & UnderstandingNew Century and The California Therapist Magazines. His one-act play, The Mary Play was republished in 2014 by Black Lawrence Press in Art & Understanding: Literature from the First Twenty Years of A&U.  You can find more by visiting his website and blog at:  tobiasmaxwell.com.

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