The Relief

Right now
After fifty years
I recognize the relief
Of celibacy

They are old
With years of intimacy
Shared

He is frail and needs
To sit on his suitcase
In the queue

He might be Jesus
Taken lifeless from the Cross

And she the mother
Of all sorrows

The faces proclaim it
And beg the whole airport
To take note that there is
No sorrow to compare
No ministry more urgent

Dragging his jacket
Halfway down his arms
She rubs cold hands inside
The hot neck of his shirt

Cupping his weary face
In her palms and he remains
Motionless a victim

It is their chosen mode
Within the limits of choice

I would rather collapse
Alone in a heap and expire

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