In all that time, I never said even a
hello to them.
They'd jog side by side
from the Verrazano Bridge along the bay
to the Sixty-Ninth Street Pier,
where they'd fall into each other's
arms and rest for a while,
before jogging back to the bridge.
And the next day they'd jog again,
coming and going like some kind
of morning tide.
But day by day a distance grew between
so what was once a side by side effort turned into a tandem
with each keeping an individual pace.
Then one day they both reached
the usual point,
halfway between where they came from and where
they were going to,
but at their own separate time.
They didn't embrace,
for one needed a pause to rest,
while the other was rested and needed
to move on.
Soon after they stopped even the pretense of jogging
Finally they were gone from my sight and memory.
But one afternoon
while driving along the FDR drive, I saw her familiar face.
was dressed for jogging,
but was walking alone very slowly along the
while the whitecaps of the East River below were furious
And one morning months later, I saw him by the lower bay.
He was sitting
alone on the pier
but somehow managed to pick my usual waterside bench.
And in that
his eyes followed the path from bridge to pier and
But there was no couple running together to watch.
And like it had
always been with me,
the current in the bay was strong and fast,
the gulls loudly cried
and immigrant fishermen mumbled,
some in Spanish, some in Russian.
And always the ships,
the ships passing
under that graceful bridge,
some arriving. Some departing,
some seeming never to move.