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That’s When I Come Back
by Don Kenton Henry


In languid moments by an idle stream
In a pasture where the grass waves with green of spring
In the seconds that follow when you put down a book
In that unguarded moment you forget to look
Over your shoulder and watch for me
That’s when I come back

In that subway where we last kissed good bye
In that four poster bed where we used to lie
In the park where you watch a small child play
And her hair is red and her eyes stare back
As if she knows she could be yours
That’s when I come back

When the winds blow from out of the mountains
And bring the leaves of autumn tumbling down
And you kick them and watch as they slowly spin round
And you see yourself in them and know your time’s passed
And you desperately wish for another undeserved chance
That’s when I come back

When you look in the mirror and see the lines on your face
When your heart cries for company and you reflect on what’s lost
And your misspent youth and all that it cost
When you think of the years that we could have had
As you hear my words when I asked you to stay
And you reach to stop your young self as you walk away
That’s when I come back

And you remember a love you thought you’d find again
But it was not to be found in that autumn wind
Nor in the grass of the pasture or by idle streams
Not in languid moments or among crowds in the streets
In subways or parks or the eyes of young children

You have looked as you lived
And it’s not to be found
And you remember my words when you let us down
Walked away from our life
And they ring and they echo in your ears to this day
“I gave the best I could give you, all you could want
And the day will come when you awake in the night
Sit straight up in your bed and the cold of your sweat
You will know the best thing in your life has been replaced with regret”
That’s when you will know the stark truth as it stares back from the night . . .
I’m not really there
I haven’t been since I cried by that subway track
I’m just your heart’s memory
I’m not ever coming back

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