if you could stop

image

image © Mariann Martland

if you could stop
just for a moment
to look at me,
look deep into my eyes,
if you could catch it,
quickly enough to let love leap in.
to give the silence space to speak,
to listen to our hearts beat
out of sync and in double-quick time,
and then slow down
to hear the distance between us,
maybe you’d allow yourself
to journey back with me,
to understand how we reached here.
if you had the time to stand and stare
at the lines upon my face,
the stains borne out of wishing
you would return to me.
to look at the lips that long
for you to read a thousand stories
of the days we let slip away.
to see the grief etched upon my skin.
marking each unending hour of pain
and lonely, oh, the loneliness;
watching you flit from here to there
and anywhere but here,
hearing my name spat out,
sounding like the last on your list,
seeing my life fall flat at your feet
and hard, while you trample and walk
away, away from us.
if you could hold my gaze long enough
to see who i’ve become,
how i grew and changed, while you
treated me ever the same.
to see your own reflection
in my teary blue haze:
the image of a someone
you swore to never become,
how this is the picture i see
and now so clearly
you were always she.
if you could bear it
to remember,
to feel all of the love
and each acute ache,
to capture a lifetime of goodbyes
in just one hello.
if you could let go
of each moment to follow
and hold onto only this.
if you could allow the space between us
to speak and to show and to breathe,
to dare to capture our essence, our us,
to let in and let go and let be.
if you could stop
just for a moment,
to look at me,
would you stay?

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