Line in the sand
Some will remember the angst I have spoken of from time to time. Seventy Four years spent mostly tormented by it. Two years ago it finally ended.
A strange time was ticking away.
A time that was anticipated often:
Imagined in moments of fear maybe,
For there is no knowing the reasons,
Or if there is, shame may obscure
To help diffuse regretted notions.
I watched her final breath and a
Tsunami of emotions broke my shore.
The air was thick with the motion of clouds,
Some faster than the eye could see,
Some obscuring the watering eye,
Others misleading as to their intent.
Yet here was I set freshly adrift
In a raft of diaphanous grief
That was truly neither sorrow nor joy.
I turned to flowers as a mark of respect:
Something that had real meaning.
I settled – as light as a feather,
On daisies – pure, simple, and white.
More a hope, more a wish, than a fact.
Was I doing what she wished?
I was not sure it mattered anymore.
Words popped out of my open mouth
That had been practised throughout the night.
They were as pure as I could make them.
I looked at the ring of deceitful fairies,
lonely as a cloud topping what was left,
And at the ring of souls who came
To witness this final ’celebration’.
I spoke with wavering voice –
Blown by the winds of my life,
Modulated by memories embedded
In a sad, now ended, relationship.
The assembled remained silent.
The music – chosen at great length –
Was too loud and drowned solemnity.
There should have been reverential silence
But I didn’t hear it; not a single byte.
Softly, by devious mechanical deed,
The remains slid downwards and out of sight.
No curtain to hide them symbolically,
Just a sleight of hand trick – deception –
A final lie, a final illusion to top them all,
And a paradigm was gone to fire and ash.
At the door I refused my daisies,
I had them placed on actually forgotten bones.
I saw no point in my retaining them.
They had served their purpose I supposed.
What use a second-hand wreath to the living?
After, the air was thick with traffic fumes.
Backed up along the dual carriageway.
See, there were spindly daffodils
Growing on brake dust sprinkled verges
That I would likely never pass again.
They swayed in the breath of cars,
Bent to the gale of passing removal vans.
Her flowers. Our land of our fathers,
Our green green grass of home
Blighted by dirt, dust and sorrow.
Another line drawn in the sand.