Like an archaeologist gently brushing

a precious artefact

she caresses an old photograph

from a crumbling envelope

and the face she has struggled to recall

snaps into clear focus.

She has settled for second best

knowing that this, her first love,

is out of reach.

It is not a matter of attractiveness

or suitability, for he has passed

on both counts.

She has been passably happy

and experienced more love

than most.

She puts on her reading glasses

and in the background

notices for the first time

the balancing rocks

of her homeland.

Her childhood reaches out

and wipes a tear from her cheek.

She looks out of her window

at her second home, smiles,

and accepts where she is.

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