Don’t Leave Me

To live in this world, you must be able to do three things: to love what is mortal; to hold it against your bones knowing your own life depends on it; and, when the time comes to let it go, to let it go. ~Mary Oliver, American poet

Don’t leave me in the Spring —

When tiny robins and bunnies leap from their nests
When lilac blossoms waft fragrant on gentle breezes
When sun-splashed skies exude fathoms of blue.

Don’t leave me in the Summer —

When vacation trails beckon adventures to warm beaches
When the ice cream truck bell shimmers refreshment
When fireworks adorn the skies and Sol glows until bedtime.

Don’t leave me in the Fall —

When tree fashion turns to reds, golds, and bronzes
When sweaters, flannel, and blue jeans emerge from hiding
When togetherness means pumpkins, apple cider, and football.

Don’t leave me in Winter —

When lacy snowflakes multiply into mountains of white
When absolute stillness opens its arms to a huge maize moon
When holidays and holy days fade disagreements and strife.

Just don’t leave me at all, okay?

21 thoughts on “Don’t Leave Me

  1. Mary Oliver is one of my favorite poets. I was able to hear her speak and read some of her poems many years ago, and she did not disappoint on any level. I think she would appreciate your use of her quote with your beautiful poem and the images it conjures up!

    • What a lovely thing to say — thank you so much! I’m glad you felt her quote worked here, and I’m even gladder my own poem didn’t disappoint!

  2. Debbie, I LOVE THIS POST!!! Starting with the stunning quote by Mary Oliver, to your oh-so beautiful poem!

    The words you used to describe each season are stellar because they paint the perfect picture.

    One of the things I missed (and the reason I moved back to the Northeast from Florida) is the change of seasons. As one ends, another begins; each bringing with it something special. For me, the seasons represent the various cycles/evolutions of life.

    Have a super weekend, my friend!

    • Thanks so very much, Ron! When I lived in Texas, I, too, missed the definite seasons, each one beautiful in its own way. Sure, it’s nice having warm weather when the north is buried in snow, but the summers with their 90s and 100s are pretty intolerable!

      Glad you liked my poem. Re-reading it, I suppose one could interpret it in several different ways, and maybe that’s not a bad thing. Words, I think, should reach out to us wherever we are.

      Hope you’re having a great weekend! xx

    • Oh, you really think so? Wow, I’m loving the generous compliment — thank you, FF! I was hoping it would be comforting to readers rather than depressing.

  3. You’ve made me nostalgic for the seasons, Debbie. Their comings and leavings always seemed comforting, somehow. No matter what else might be happening, we knew we could count on the seasons — and we still can. Your descriptions are lovely, and I especially like the line about holidays and holy days easing strife. We could use a little more of that!

    • Thank you, Linda, for such a lovely comment! I know most poetry can be interpreted on many levels, but I was hoping this one would be comforting instead of maudlin. People — and pets — enter and leave our lives, as the seasons do. I imagine we should appreciate them while they’re around. And oh, yes, maybe we need more holidays and holy days to reduce the strife that seems rampant these days!

  4. Oh, how could you have known I’m working on my mother’s eulogy this weekend? What beautiful, poignant writing you’ve shared. I remember the day my mother died, I was in Charlotte, NC, having just been with her two days before and she was doing well, and I found a hospital chapel to cry and cry in, and kept asking her, “why?” As in why did you have to leave now, Mom? We had this to do and that to do and a new great-grandchild for her was weeks from being born…..I was bereft and angry and being a big baby – so, I get it, Don’t leave me is something we wish for all those whom we love.

    • Barb, I’m so sorry. I can’t fathom writing a eulogy for a deceased loved one, but if this poem eases your grief at all, I’m glad for having written it. Never feel like a big baby for honestly weeping your emotions, my friend. The death of a parent (I know, having lost my dad eight years ago) changes you, forces you to grow up. Thank you for sharing the memory of your mother’s death — I’m sure she’s looking down right now and beaming with pride over the loving family she helped bring into existence!

    • Monica, my mom always thought Robert Goulet was an outstanding songbird. Thanks for that link. I do remember the song and thought about linking to it somewhere in my post; however, as you pointed out, the song is more from the viewpoint of the one leaving, and my poem had to be from the viewpoint of the one left behind.

  5. Beautiful poem. And to Barbara above – I’m so sorry about your mom. It’s so hard to say goodbye, but writing an eulogy for her will help you process it all. I know. I had to do the same when my mom died unexpectedly 10 days after my last visit home. Hugs to you. Everybody needs their mom.

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