The Last Box

I didn’t realize that the last box would be the heaviest,
not until I stumbled with it down what is now your drive.
Tears flowing unchecked were blocking my common sense.
Crying, remembering when our desire was alive.
Shoved the box in the van, slammed my door closed.
Then I checked the garage for things forgotten.
Taped to your toolbox, I saw your favorite picture of me
the one you promoted from your wallet
to the dashboard of your race car, a Vega, 1973.
My image inspired you as you raced
or so you used to say.
I guess the week you yanked me from the car
Was the week you did so well, driving your Vega to first place.
The house looks deserted, the grounds are unkempt and unloved.
Summer heat has burned the lilac bush I finally grew and turned my roses brown.
Flowers struggle among the weeds and most of them have died, died to set me free.
The angel trumpets and morning glories alone proclaim
that once I touched the earth around your home with love.
I bend over to rescue the flowers setting dead in plastic pots,
and then I set them back down.
I can’t save what’s been killed with neglect, I know. I know. I’ve tried.
I knew what would happen when I stopped the watering that kept them alive.
I carried out the last box tonight as the sun was going down
It was so much heavier than the first,
the weight really caught me by surprise.
I patted the morning glories goodbye, watered them with tears.
I climbed up into my van, remembering your words the day you bought it.
As you handed me the keys, you softly said,
“There, now you can take all your stuff the next time that you decide to leave.”
I shifted into reverse, held down the brake as I laid my head on the steering wheel to cry.
Crying because; still, I love you, crying for all that we lost.
The last box was the heaviest, so much heavier than the first
How could I have known that a box of fancy glasses
Would weigh me down the worst?

1999

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