Without looking up they know the answer.
It’s over. The way home has become
Too dangerous. His idea was to follow
The Vaughan Harvey past the hospital,
then another mile or so to Birch Hollow,
But somewhere along the way it all
Went very wrong. The wide pavement
Became a mountain road, with falling
Rocks. They had to abandon the car
And go by foot with their two children,
Who were tired and frightened and fell far
Behind. What a fool he was! For too long
The woman had let him lead the way.
Then one of the children, who belonged
To her, slipped and fell down the hill.
And the other child, who was his, did the same,
As if prompted. Fortunately, neither was killed.
They landed in a soft blanket of grass.
As a last act he carried them to safety.
She’d once respected him, in the past.
That was over. She’d find her own way.