Tuesday, 19 December 2017

Turned and Gone Away.

This one explores a complex kind of sadness. I suppose it is a lament.

Turned and Gone Away.

For my loved sister, Jean.

Your house,
gripped by flood,
floats from its foundations,
sinking ever lower.
You sit on the roof.
I cry out to you, 
swim, throw a rope,
beg you to leave
but you can only wring your hands,
turn and float away.

Small and diminished,
you tremble before a precipice
filled with darkness.
I cry out that I understand
your fears of age,
diminished powers, loneliness,
the horror that shuffling dependency
may lead you into actions once unspeakable
but you can only wring your hands,
turn and step away.

In deep denial you reel
from the mirror, truth.
You close your eyes
and cover your ears.
I cry out that I understand 
how time and circumstance have trapped you,
that you have grown far too old for truth,
that you need to pretend you still are
the wonderful person you once were
but you can only wring your hands,
stagger and flee away.

You shuffle
down a long corridor
in the slow and painful way
of your last years.
I cry out that I understand
how extreme age forced you
into secrets, deceptions, 
and, much worse, sad betrayal 
of some you so loved.
I shout I love you and forgive you
but the words echo and bounce 
down the empty corridor.
You have ceased wringing your hands.
You have turned and gone away.

First published at Better Than Starbucks

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