He was always up for the fight but never the promise.

So diligent and fearless in the needless struggle

But a coward in the face of the vow to stay entwined for all our tomorrows.

As if our truth can only drink of blood and tears for it to grow.

So I learned to embroider scars on what would have been a perfectly clear sky

Just to get him to look up and call it beautiful.

He liked climbing treacherous mountains at the tail end of spring

To bring me the last of the purest snow.

And I smile as I hold them until my fingers turn blue

Every drop seasoned by both my anger and surrender

Then bottled in a derelict apothecary

Glass gems that sparkle but freezing to the touch.

Elixirs that cannot cure loneliness

In the late autumn he wandered, left me waiting by the window

He ignored my emerald quilts and strode past my porch lights

In a valiant search for the last green leaves

And rare petals found only on the face of some far off cliff

To give me handmade flower rings that would wither by sunset

Overlooked the gold bands I offered that glimmer even in the deepest darkness.

So I keep a library of sweet smelling pages

Filled with our dead flowers that on my worst days remind me of funerals

Wreathes of my slow daily deaths.

And still I stand shivering and rattling beside him in the biting wind.

My back to the inviting and toasty hearth I made

To watch him struggle to feed a fire amidst this heavy blitz

To strain to turn and churn the frozen earth for his blooms.

Just so he could give me wildflowers in winter.

Like I didnt already build him a greenhouse with my own hands.

I pray fervently.

For the seasons to teach him the mercy it takes to one day leap or leave me.

And until then, to grant me the great strength it takes

To endure the love of my winter gardener.