There were days when I wished I could die,
And numbing nights when I shuddered in a feverish night sweat,
Fearing that I would not live.
Oh to have those precious delightful days back again!
I could climb my mountain once more,
And exult in the caresses of unstoppable time.
I lived my pensive days by the new hotel in town.
And took long walks down an avenue of fiery pepper trees.
It was on Washington Avenue I met Ruhama.
She was but a girl when I took her hand into mine.
My soul and hers embraced like clouds in the night,
When doors and windows are closed
And only little glimpses of strange light appear.
We lived through decades of summers and winters,
Rainstorms and heat waves,
Weddings and days of grief.
And how could I ever forget
The early morning coffee times in the kitchen before work.
Ten thousand glorious times we awoke together
Inside the curtained, perfumed sanctuary of Ruhama,
The solitary love of my life!
Weep not for my grave here.
Please don’t weep or shed a tear.
I died happy at 45,
And the folks put me here in Clark Cemetery.
But it is good here.
I can enjoy the quiet and the scurrying rats
Above my bed at midnight.