Prodigal

 

When I return? I told you never,
And that was what I then believed
In thrall of youth, I took in vain "Forever",
A concept that I yet could not conceive

To play Penelope was not your nature,
You would not gaze out at the sea and sigh,
And when I failed to return, my failure
Was only something else to leave behind

I would not blame you if you closed the shutter,
I could not ask to have it open for so long
In the harsh wind, my sail too long has fluttered,
Too oft I stopped to hear the siren's song

But on my odyssey, though banished
From any but remembered bliss,
While I had memories, I could not vanish
Into Charybdis's abyss

Could you accept a wind-tossed wanderer
Who in his travels strayed too far from you --
A fool, who only now knows what he squandered,
Repentant now for being so untrue?

I couldn't dare to plead for your forgiveness --
It would be far too much to wish for or expect,
But I have hope that, given time, your goodness
Will be stoked by the fire of my regret

Or cast me off, and I'll go gladly,
Happy to have had but a glimpse of what could be
And, if I look back now and then a little sadly,
Your face will be the last thing that I see

 

2001 Copyright held by the author.

 

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