It was painful that experience

Of first love and the abruptness

Of that unexpected separation

Rejection how else was I supposed

To understand your disappearance.

You believed in direct action.

And I had walked away from Christ

But not the teaching of love

Supporting violence was not my cause.

It was the first and last time we argued

And then you were gone

And love. My love was left

Fluttering in the darkness.

I’d thought it was better to work

From within. A compromise

You’d said. I wanted no labels

Attached to me. But no matter

What I said or did to avoid this

Providing the machine with an excuse

To dismiss. Devoid of reason

They went ahead in any case.

For forty years I’d worked

To help and speak  for those

Appointed and anointed as the cause

Of societies shame and failings.

And at a time when I was brought

to my knees and my belief

and hope suddenly made to falter

I sought you out –  that place

that time when it felt like

there was a degree of certainty

to see what you had done

with your life and whether you’d found

an answer or even happiness

The first search brought up

Your face from a photograph

In your obituary I recognised

had been taken at that time.

In that place that house

Where we had lived together

And you were gone again.

Edinburgh 001

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