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Wednesday, January 13, 2010

No Requiem or Elegy, Just Empty Space

Empty hospital bed

i

I'm like a child at Christmas
slowly wanting to pull you
from your bed. Wake up, wake up,
(we have so much to do sleepy-head)

and you stir, and the world
wakes with you, and I know
I have not yet lost you
to the dark wide stretch
of silver plains and hills over
a night-filled river.

We stare at each other,
a little afraid as we eye
the distances life has made
between us that make no sense.

ii

You grab my hand as though
you keenly feel the spiralling to
nothing, and I hold on tightly
as though I can stop you leaving;

dizzied our hearts spin,
(suffocated from not enough living)
I try and get you to sit up,
though you stand on the edge
of this huge midnight,

you and I both know,
all the rooms we decorated in the other
will be in the dark
without your light.

iii

You manage to sit up and look
as though you've won a fight.
We are defiant; irrelevant of what
might come, we take every moment,

greedily we grow larger, stronger,
by taking what is ours,
and into the rings
and rings of stars
we dance with words
(as we once did with our bodies)

smiling with a child-like secrecy,
at the memories we built up,
one by one, stone upon trusty stone,
we lock ourselves away into this home
which no storm can blast open,

I am here I say,
as I climb into the hospital bed
with you and gently kiss
your face. You respond

I will miss you,
as though you have already
gone, to leave behind
a dead, empty space.

From the collection: "Home Alone" (Letters to B) >>

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