TO EDITH (no 1)

What can I say? That I love you?
You knew that already.
That I love you enough to lose you?
That is closer.

I thank you for all you have done.
I thank you for your gentleness, your patience,
And your soft mouth.

I thank you for your tolerance of an Elderly Teen-ager
Embarrassing you with attention.

I thank you for your kindness
As you brought me bliss with sweet relief.

I thank you for your beauty
As you gratified my every sense
With touch and taste
And sight and sound and scent.

I thank you for your tact
As I showed you off to my friends,
Proud to show them a lovely lady who would go out with me.

I thank you for your insight
As you realised that it was no use.
That I was no use to you in your present need.

I thank you for your companionship
As you rode with me in my car
Lightening my journeys Lightening my heart.

I thank you for your strength of character
As you decided what must be done
And did it. Re-arranging our future.

And I thank you for your compassion
As you sent me on my way with the minimum of pain,
Scorning Gamesmanship to rid you of my nuisance.

I am your friend.

H.St.Vincent Beechey 1993