I wish I’d asked you for the last dance.
I wish I’d known it was the last,
And I’d stuck around to hear your song
And see your smile
And touch your face
And watch your eyes wink back at me
I wish I’d known it all along.
I wish I’d known you were heading over,
Is it better over there?
So far away, a breath or two
Beyond my reach?
Where finger tips can’t quite touch
And you dance to a different melody.
Is it better on the other side?
Is the grass greener and the sky more blue?
Have you found the siren calling you?
Have you found the clarity
And tranquilty you talked of so earnestly
Have you found the peace of mind
And quiet of heart,
The gentle smiles and soothing laughs
Have you found the campfire
And rippling stream
That did so often frequent dreams
That left you yearning alongside me?
Have you found something to fill that gap
For which I was not quite enough
Have you found the sandpaper
To smooth gentle circles
In to the rough
And leave inoffensive slopes
Without the cliffs
Off which you crashed
And the mountains you used to struggle with.
O, I wish I’d asked you for the last dance,
I wish you’d given me at least, just that
With your hand outstretched
You’d tip your hat
And take my waist within your arms
And swirl me round
Till rumpled hair and tempered calm
And passions frayed
Became a blur
In just a moment where the entire world
Can cave in upon itself without a care
And I’d bury my face within your hair
And breathe your scent
And kiss your cheek
And say goodbye,
That would have been at least a little fair …
Instead you ran away
Out the back and over yonder
In the middle of the night
Away from accusatory eyes
And hearts that longed for a goodbye.
You snuck away
And then, mid-flight your heart kicked in
And you yelled a promise out to me
And it was carried on the wind
And dropped inside an envelope
Upon my bedside table.
And that fated morning when I did wake
To find your handwriting
Your cursive script and my name engraved
I opened it,
With naivity and teenage love trapped inside my grin.
And slowly that youthful smile
Dissolved, and tiny termites ate my skin
And tunnelled deep into my heart
And filled that envelope you sent
With the sawdust
Of my heart,
And I wish I’d asked you for that last dance.
I wish you’d offered it to me
And known how much that dance did mean.
I wish you’d cared enough to stay
And dance a while
And laugh and play
And even if you couldn’t talk
Of the darkness that did plague you
Could you not have let me know?
Or given signs, or hints
That could have shown something
Of where your heart was at?
Did I not at least
Deserve, just that?
Just a simple explanation
If nothing more,
Did I have to find you,
With feet, just off the floor?
Did I really need to understand
What it means to be an empty shell
And see your body hanging there
Drained of life
And that vacant stare
That’s now branded upon my soul
Because it screams to me
Of tales untold
And of a heart perhaps that could’ve been unburdened
If you’d been at all
But you chose to run away,
And now I’ve found I cannot stay
For more than moments at a time
In a place that pulls my mind
Towards you and what we shared,
And that, my dear