After a while you learn the subtle difference
Between holding a hand and chaining a soul,
And you learn that love doesn’t mean leaning
And company doesn’t mean security,
And you begin to learn that kisses aren’t contracts
And presents aren’t promises,
And you begin to accept your defeats
With your head up and your eyes open
With the grace of a woman, not the grief of a child,
And you learn to build all your roads on today,
Because tomorrow’s ground is too uncertain for plans,
And futures have a way of feeling down in mid-flight.
After a while you learn
That even sunshine burns if you get too much.
So you plant your own garden and decorate your own soul,
Instead of waiting for someone to bring you flowers.
And you learn that you really can endure…
Than you really are strong,
And you really do have worth.
And you learn and learn…
With every goodbye you learn.
Author: Veronica A. Shoffstall
I loved this poem since the first time I read it. I like to think about it as a poem about a relationship with life, rather than the poem about a love relationship. In any case, each time I read it it makes me smile.