Had I Known

Had I known
the last time I saw
you would truly
be the last,

I would have listened to you
a little longer,
hugged you
a little harder.

This is true,
but this knowing
would have stolen
from us, the gift of presence;

I would have been wondering
if I listened long
and well enough,
if I hugged you hard enough.

Engrossed in those questions,
I may not have observed you
well enough to remember
the way you smiled at me

before I got in the car to leave.
I may have missed the peace
in your eyes when I turned
and looked back at you,

that one last time.

And so it is better
that sometimes we
do not get to
say goodbye.

I am all right now
because I get to
remember
your smile.