On Thoughts That Fade in Absence

With you, I want to lie awake
Until the early morning breaks
Itself across your blinds.
Or sleep, and dream of you again
And wonder still why you would deign
To look upon my kind.

I see you in my mind’s great hall –
That place I go to when I fall
Asleep upon the page.
There, you are a thing so bright
You seem a memory of light
From some holier age.

But then I wake without you here
And in the dawning gloom I fear
In time I will forget
The way you laughed, the way you talked
The way you held me when we walked
Against that last sunset.

I now know why that ancient king
Would bet his throne upon a ring
And burn the watchfires mile for mile:
To see his lover’s seldom smile.


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