“WHEN TRAILS DIVIDE”–a love poem by Erwin A. Thompson
My father wrote this poem for my mother, Ruth Evelyn Johnston Thompson after her death May 1, 2006. You can read more about my mother in "Sweet Little Dove" under "Sightlines: A Poet's Diary" on this website.
by Erwin A. Thompson
For Ruth, my faithful partner of the trail for almost sixty-four years.
From youth's instinctive optimism
To the realism of an older age
We faced the world together,
Like the turning of a page.
It seemed we each could understand
How the other one might feel—
We made a pretty darn good guess,
And kept our shoulders to the wheel.
No regrets, or second thoughts (that)
The marital knot was tied.
Together, we accomplished things
Many would not have tried.
Janet said we were like a team of mules,
Hauling supplies o'er a rocky mountain trail
The things we tried were things we did!
Not many of them failed.
"From Jerusalem to Jericho
They’re travelin' every day --
And many are the fallen ones
That lie along the way."
(Quote from an old gospel song)
The world is not too diff'rent, now;
With battered souls throughout the land.
We saw the heartbreak and the loss,
And always tried to lend a helping hand.
She said: "You must go on alone,"
Rememb'ring when she was my bride—
We shared it all, the good and bad.
My teardrops fall.
Our trails divide
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