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  • Lorraine Johnson

[122] The Gaze

I once met the gaze of a man

watching me as we moved

courageously across the land—

in plane, bus and armed check points—

it was always us, and the lust

—of a thousand words left to dust.

Our chins were up toward the sun—

its energy pulling us, as if one

—it filled us red and drew us near,

like love can do when it appears.

Many moons and suns passed by us

then in one instant—as the gaze,

I turned my face with all my grace

and put him in my suitcase

like a memory left to trace

I opened the window, said goodbye

then drifted onward with a sigh

it was not as easy as the bird flies.

The moons, suns—there were many

before my eyes gazed toward another

one who came with depth and soul,

but also with a hidden toll

—enough to turn my face, once more.

With window open, and eyes shoreward

returning moments tumbled forward

like the linger of—the once met gaze

that so I see, never was left in the haze,

—even as gray hues turn my hair

and only words have I to bare.


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