A Few Poetic Words

At last the fires subside
And I breathe without elation
Free of desperate madness
And the hope of younger men.
Have I fallen so very far
That a friend’s kind embrace
Awakens dreams and desires
I thought I could not feel?
That these sullen, bitter embers
Flare up into inferno
The soft touch of warm regards
Enough to fan the flames?
Or is it so that I have here
Huddled beaneath the darkness
That the faintest star can
Blind me with its brilliance?
Truly, has it been so long
Since I have felt alive
That this thunderous roar is
Nothing more than my beating heart?
I must stop this now before she knows
I am weak before foolish notions
And I waste this valued friendship
Upon the pyre of past regrets.
I will diminish and desist,
Stamp out the flames that dance
In defiance of my will and my
Stubborn adult understanding.
She will never know my regret
As I turn away in silence
And walk far from possibilities
That I dare not entertain.
I know my place and function,
Will perform without complaint
That she may take what she needs
And leave behind the refuse.
But sometimes in the darkness
I still wonder to myself
If I am ever to be more
Than quiet companion.
Sometimes in the mornings
I still lament to myself;
What am I to anyone
But a few poetic words?

Kings Mountain, NC
June 14, 2006

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