When the trainer asks ‘did you forget to breath’ it sounds stupid, and unfortunately true. A little like thinking too much about the doing so the thoughts twist knots into your limbs. The panic welling in much the same way as your lungs swelling up against your rib-cage. You were sure you were, then you’re not sure, suddenly so unsure you can’t even breath without counting each gasp. In… out… in… in… out.. out.. In… In… In… Out… Out… Out.. …
I followed your path, at a distance. You like the sun, or any volatile star burning a streak towards the horizon. A scorching vision to those of us watching, waiting. Aware that you would set before us. Terrified of dusk. Sensing its arrival anyway.
The peas have podded. I’m not sure if it’s the snap, or your bog standard, good old trusty garden type, but they’ve podded first with the white petals of the flowers still stuck to the green of their shells. Inside the crop is still too small, too young. I checked today. Popped my nail into the seam, slit through the flesh, cracked it open. New growth, old book. They both sound the same. They are not ready for harvest, but when you bite down they explode. They taste like spring, or summer, or something else that’s hot days and sudden rain storms. They tasted like they should do. New and fresh. It’s been a wet one, this spring, this downpour of water thickening the green.
When far away, an interrupted cry is not something you need concern yourself with. Catherine repeated her grandmother’s words softly enough that the room wouldn’t hear them. ‘Pah!’ Her father threw his cards on the coffee table. ‘You cheated!’ He jabbed a fat finger towards his wife. She shrugged and gathered his cards in again. Outside the cry echoed. ‘Catherine! You play the witch, God knows she already has all my money.’ Catherine nodded and slid from the widow seat. It doesn’t do to dwell on lost souls. Her grandmother had said that too. The cards were split and dealt. Two queens and a knave. A house leaking secrets. Another cry. Closer. Louder. ‘Pass or play?’ Catherine shook her head. ‘Pass,’ she whispered. Shadows gathered by the fireplace. She could ignore them, but the play would continue. ‘Pass,’ she whispered. But ghosts never listen. If you would like to join in the dVerse Poets Pub new link up ‘Prosery’ then click the badge above to visit their site. The challenge is to write a piece …
Fire-dwarfed we all sit, stand, wait, drawing along timelines scythe-eyed for news or perhaps revelation that this is all just a dream, a joke. Dust-tongued our words dry up like sand through an hour glass. All gone and past leaving only empty air. A promise cracked apart. History pour out, breaks the damn of grief and dark-vowelled words, replacing now with then as what will be already spread its roots in the tear-culled.
There is a collective misguided assumption, that we know the words. Singing like rusted taps, gargling and spluttering our way to the chorus where enthusiasm trumps experience, and pipes swell and burst so all is noise and furious revelry. The wave of it crests breaks, washes us along to the next line. As real as the misting of our breaths as we sing. The cold is not felt in the thick of it.
When you arrived as the snowdrops melted, pressed cherry blossom to my breast, told me love is like a flower in bloom, already closer to an end than the start. Pressed cherry blossom to my breast, found thorns that left their marks, already closer to an end than the start when sorrow grew from these seeds. Found thorns that left their marks, taught me how to cut out dead wood, when sorrow grew from these seeds pruning became vital to overall survival. Taught me how to cut out dead wood, told me love is like a flower in bloom, pruning became vital to overall survival when you arrived as the snowdrops melted.
So I blamed you, because it was easy, sweeter on the tongue. Didn’t have the bite of admitting I could have been wrong. I’ve just been writing up three longish poems so I felt something short and sweet was in order tonight.
One sip to poison a prince, his teeth sunk into forbidden fruit, while one-true-love stands waiting, patient, the perfect good girl all fairy-tales and smiles, alone. Drinks her own potion, steps free of skin crafted from paperbound volumes brittle with age. Breathes. Finally. Screams.
Little girls are taught that boys being boys, will torment to show their love. Big girls will claim that love makes up for bruises, broken bones and split lips. I am lucky not to have known that sort of that love. I’ve never been struck by someone claiming their heart beats for me while echoing the beating with their fists. When it happens to a man they are reduced to the weaker sex, because it’s bad enough when a woman doesn’t have the balls to leave. Without experiencing the same thing I can’t say for certain, but I’ve carried enough fear with me to understand what it is to cling to the things we know. Privileged, is a tricky word to stick when most of us hide the things dragging us down.