Trail’s Evening Walk Upon Losing Love

Mere yards above far yonder mountains
The golden sun gives little warmth to the winter path
But ahead, as the slope ascends, I see it’s brightness cross the trail
And indeed dark bark of maple trees is lighted almost gold

I briskly start my walk up hill, boot by boot
As another day is waning, another year near passed
And I have again my heart exposed
To pain and loss, and its aftermath

It’s not that, given time and chance
I should not have known, for my hair has grayed
And love has worked its will on me
Not countless times, but more than my child’s soul can know

My breath comes hard as the slope increases
And ahead the golden beckoning light
Retreats with each step, each passing moment
Break into run? For that too late

For now sadness slows me, more with advancing years
I go on, yes, my step is firm and resolute
But I am no longer so young as to forget
That sadness, like joy, is no gift of freedom

The light extends now down through the wood
Now open, and turns yon dark pond blue
And I am enough old and hard to know
That even love’s loss does not beauty fade

And now, returning, I see the far, far distant peak
Still capturing its shroud of gold
So far, a peak unknown, whose silence somehow
States fair what might have been, was not, and was.