You That Were

A poem by John Frederick Freeman

You that were
Half my life ere life was mine;
You that on my shape the sign
Set of yours;
You that my young lips did kiss
When your kiss summed up my bliss....
Ah, once more
You to kiss were all my bliss!

You whom I
Could forget--strange, could forget
Even for days (ah, now the fret
Of my grief!);
You who loved me though forgot;
Welcomed still, reproaching not....
Ah, that now
That forgetting were forgot!

You that now
On my shoulder as I go
Put your hand that wounds me so;
You that brush
Yet my lips with that one last
Kiss that bitters all things past....
How shall I
Yet endure that kiss the last?

You that are
Where the feet of my blind grief
Find you not, nor find relief;
You that are
Where my thought flying after you
Broken falls and flies anew,
Now you're gone
My love accusing aches for you.

March 4, 1911.

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