I braided a basket of my fingers,
in case I was required to catch
if you fell from any sort of height
or perhaps needed a boost
to reach a shelf
or a step
on a ladder I could hold
once I’d unwoven these hands
to grip the rungs better
if you eventually decide
I looked up what ivy was supposed to represent,
after we called the man with the poison
to clear the wooden fence panel right to the root.
This creeping plant,
that works its way between the cracks,
and closes its fist so slowly,
that you cannot see the brickwork break,
it’s supposed to represent friendship.
I thought about you then,
how I’d failed to see how deep you’d planted yourself
until the moment that you cracked me clean in half.
Like ivy, you keep coming back
no matter the cold or the drought,
there is no prying those tendrils loose,
no poison that will make this shadow of you wither.
I must live with the damage you have caused.
I must somehow learn how not to crumble.
I’ve been carrying your shade around
and I think I need to apologise.
I’ve been keeping you closer these days,
tucked between my umbrella
and the notepads,
near the bottom of my handbag
like a half empty pack of tissues.
From time to time I dig you out,
just to turn over our last conversation,
re-read the second hand messages,
remind myself that you’re gone.
I still don’t feel like you’re gone.
I wonder when I will?
I’m a little late to the party for Tuesday Poetics, yesterday turned into something of a manic day with an emergency shoe shopping trip after work, but more about that at the weekend.
The prompt this Tuesday was the word ‘shade’. You can take it anyway you like but the word shade had to appear in the prompt.
Some days it’s like you’ve only just slipped through my fingers.
I’m still grasping for the tail-end of a thread,
trying to haul you back up, back to me
and everyone you left.
I feel guilty for the hollowness in my chest,
as if I don’t deserve to miss you this much.
I don’t believe I deserve to miss you this much
because I should have realised the acres of spaces you occupied
inside my head and heart
before the phone call rang in from your mother
and every worst fear was came crashing in like thunder.