Magnolia Blossoms, Botanical Garden, San Francisco - Photo by Jane Hudson
by Vivian Imperiale
I see those couples around the City—
with one walking paces ahead.
Older, some wrinkled,
and, sadly, nearly oblivious to their mate.
I wish they understood what a precious gift
it is to grow old together,
something to be cherished
and not taken for granted.
You and I looked forward to decades together—
lively days of talking and laughter.
But you died young,
so I can only imagine
what it would have been like for us—
with our combined warmth,
creating an energy
that was more than times two,
that flowed out to those around us
and made them smile.
We always believed that, no matter what,
our love would sustain us.
And so I remember that now
and know that, in a sense,
we are still side-by-side.
But that doesn’t mean
I don’t miss seeing you
and what would have been.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Vivian (Sinick) Imperiale left her 18-year career as support staff in a real estate office because of a chance encounter with a man with schizophrenia. Since then, she has been a mental health advocate for over 40 years, including 20 years employed in the field. Vivian has a BA in Psychology and an MA in Special Education.
Other works in this issue:
You Invited Me on a Picnic
Vistas & Byways Review is the semiannual journal of fiction, nonfiction and poetry by members of Osher Lifelong Learning Institute (OLLI) at San Francisco State University.
Osher Lifelong Learning Institute at San Francisco State University (OLLI at SF State) provides communal and material support to the Vistas & Byways volunteer staff.