Don’t you know the lightning bugs
make me think of you?
The way they rise up out of bushes
just as dew kisses grass to flash
signals across the yard
trying to catch some love.

Don’t you know it’s impossible
not to remember every summer night
growing up how I’d catch Mason jars full,
but then feel sad and let them all go before bed?
And how every year you smile when
I tell this same story.

Don’t you know the inky tree limbs
reaching out across the fading sky
still look the same? Like lanky hands
hugged by hills as dark encases them,
like when we’d wrap up in quilts across
the ground to watch stars when we first met.

Don’t you know seeing our kids
run in circles through fields,
pops of light glowing in their hands,
laughter woven into a chorus of frogs
has been one of my greatest joys?
They grow taller and steadier
just as these roots we’ve planted grow deeper,
and I can’t help but feel the years ache under my skin.

Don’t you know I’ll always have
a fondness for these moments in between
this day and the next?
Those are the ones that stick,
clinging to the sweetness of what is,
but anticipating what is yet to be.
It’s the delight and the hope
blinking away pain, holding onto love.