The leaves they fell in piles across the frozen ground, The wind howled through the branches with a mournful sound, The graveyard, a solemn tomb with a empty face. A deep sad foreboding filled the empty space. There the old man stood, dressed all in black, Clouded eyes, wrinkled face, but still a tall straight back. He walked alone, searching through the many names, Until at last he found the one for which he came. He knelt before the tombstone and read the faded lines, Her name, still so beautiful, graced the heartless sign. He brushed away the leaves to read the epitaph engraved, "Adored by all, loved by none", was the only phrase. And with those words his stoic guard crumbled apart- Tears flooded his eyes and old memories his heart, "No," he wept, "No, she never knew the truth" "I loved her so dearly, but never showed the proof" If only she had known all the times he looked across the room, To see her face lighting up the solemn gloom. How many times he fell in love with her sighs, Or how he always dreaded saying goodbye. How he wished she had known for the better- And his mind went back to the letter, The letter that told of all his hopes and dreams, But he was unsure, a coward it seems. She had loved him, he knew that for certain, Her eyes like a stage when they opened the curtain. So perfect and lovely, but broken with pain, Knowing his heart could never be her’s again. It was so long ago, but he saw it all like yesterday. The letter he wrote, the words he did say, He had confessed his devotion with a shaking pen- But when it was sealed, had lost the courage to send. It sat on his nightstand lonely and bleak, He had to walk past it week after week. All he must do was ring for the butler to come, But the bell sat there, forever silent and dumb. Till at last too tortured by these unsent words, He tucked it away in his bureau, hidden by boards. And then he did his best to forget, To drown the voices of deep regret. So he buried the memories in riches and success, He went into business and gained in excess He was wealthy and powerful, he had it all, Winter, spring, summer, and fall. Life sped on ever changing year after year, The man in the mirror now wore a grey beard. He heard of the funeral through a mutual friend. He was shocked to hear of her sudden end. Now he had come to visit her here, All of the memories, regrets, and the tears. Alas, too slow now to change his mistake. He was struck with the truth, but it was too late. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~ He awoke in a sweat and sat up in bed. He was once again young, brown locks on his head. His breath came in gasps his hand shaky and unstable The letter he wrote to her, freshly sealed on the table. -Mindy Moyer
*This is a work of fiction. Characters, events, and incidents are the products of the author’s imagination. Any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, or actual events is purely coincidental.