The Lost Letter #dailypost #history #poetry #photography


Repentant Magdalene – De La Tour 1640 oil

As I wrote to you these words

tears congealed with blackened ink

this goodbye so hard to write

how I wished I could re-take

*

You went away to war

tore my heart in two

the uniform I sewed

no longer resembles blue

*

A woman fights a war

it’s not with guns and spears

we fight inside ourselves

clinging to what is dear

*

The day I found her lace

I wished it wasn’t so

Perfumed you and adored

it dealt the final blow

*

Tucked beneath her favor

I’m leaving you this note

 wrenched from inside you see

our covenant you broke 

*

So many times I wished

I’d never seen that thing

for what it made me do

I threw away your ring

*

You wrote to me at length

declared unfailing love

how could you still claim that

with all that had been done

*

On hardened path you did return

a wounded, changed man

stump hidden in your sleeve

I couldn’t grasp your hand

*

The twinkle in those eyes

they still retained that smile

with all that they had seen

over all the bloodied miles

*

I asked about the words

I’d tucked into your shirt

the paper had gone missing

tramped about the dirt

*

I had to brave the lace

you assured that it was gone

no longer fragrant starched

just dirtied torn and brown

*

your crooked smile held back the pain

“I never loved her dear

white favors thrown into the wind

her death ominous and near

*

cannon ball fury pierced the night

she raced injured to save

mercy had all but been undone

we laid her in hollow grave

*

I  begged, cried “forgiveness please”

he said ” I owe you none

you are my heart’s strong shielding

a precious gift sent from above”

***

the note sepia

The Daily Post challenge was “Dialogue.” I hope you hear the voices from the past in this poem; a dialogue of pain and hope.

Tomorrow is the 151st anniversary of the bloody battle of Antietam – this a tribute to love, life, and life lost.

Photograph: De la Tour’s “Repentant Magdalene” (from the National Gallery); “The Lost Letter” © L. Moon 2013

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15 thoughts on “The Lost Letter #dailypost #history #poetry #photography

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