Home for Christmas
such a sweet name…
They left the hospital
while it was being done –
the cold air
took them by the arm;
streets, cars, people,
floated, swayed past.
I’ll do it, he said;
I haven’t lost one yet,
he added, but I will –
across thousands of miles
their daughter’s screams
in their ears –
they couldn’t switch off
as they spacewalked around
the craters in Oxford Street,
with their deceptively firm
footholds of Christmas cheer.
© Nemo 2023
Not a happy homecoming by the sound of it. Not when terminal cancer is concerned.
The contrast between the parents’ anguish and the Oxford Street atmosphere of Christmas cheer comes across very poignantly.
Thanks Luigi. You’re right about the anguish. We met the parents. Fortunately the outcome was successfull. They told us about the surgeon’s disturbing words.
I too would have been troubled by the surgeon’s pronouncement. Perhaps he was trying to tell the parents to rely on his ability but to be prepared to expect the worst.
Good job that his skill prevailed.
A powerful piece, very well expressed. Whole picture painted in few words, subtle reflection of their reaction. Impressed!
Thank you, John. I’m pleased you liked it. Thanks, too, if it was you, or thanks to whoever it was, for the nom and the nib!
The structure does the heavy work here, Gerald. Tight, held -in lyrics that mirror the emotions. The use of Christmas cheer to pitch and raise anger in bitter comparison. In few words you show us the brittle vulnerability of the parents. All in all, a masterclass.
I’m.pleased with the response this poem is receiving. For years it seemed to be going nowhere but this is the slightly tweaked version and lo! It’s finished. Many thanks for your appreciative comment, Jim.
Well done Gerald, I concurr with Jim et al but what I like the most is the sense of detachment you convey in the parents, master class indeed.
Thanks, Keith. This poem’s finished at last. For years I couldn’t get it right but I came up with a couple of tweaks on Thursday and voila, Keith likes it.
Thank you, Trevor, for your kind words. I’m pleased my simple piece has the power to grab. ‘Melanoma’ has, I believe, a sweet sound to it, despite the first few letters coming from the Greek for black. The first three letters by a non-etymological coincidence happen to remind one of ‘mel’, honey in Latin, and the word ‘mellifluous, do they not?
Best wishes, Gerald