Nearly two years ago, my partner of 12 years and I walked away from our partnership, in two different directions in life. There was a lot of hurt that had been building for years. Even when two people agree to separate, even when both of you want to set out in life looking for something new, it hurts. More comes unraveled than you even realize. I wrote this last year, marking a year since the decision to divorce. I was trying to capture how our relationship had weathered so much, but didn’t make it out unharmed. I was trying to find a poetic way to say that only through divorcing was I able to finally really fully feel love from him, this was not his fault. I wanted to say, that despite years of pain, there were moments where we shared absolute beauty. For us, these moments so often occurred in nature. Now, almost 2 years later, it feels appropriate to finally share this piece.
We fell with the last leaf of autumn.
A quiet beauty of colors against blue sky,
Turned brittle brown and left forgotten
As the fiery oranges and golden hues
faded into long winter days.
Through four seasons
we scraped our brokenness,
Gathered the trampled mulch,
And waited for new growth
We survived a harsh winter
To gather again the debris
To learn the depth of rocky soil
The richness of what has decayed
Our branches reached out more than once
An effort to touch the missing leaves
But fallen leaves die their quiet death
And we cannot undo years of sorrow
For moments of sunlight over an Ozark hill
When the first leaf begins to turn