she calls

the conquest of death



says she’s not feeling well.

has talked to her supervisor.

is waiting for the paramedics.

a pain in her chest,

just like the one she had

when we went camping,

Annan and I, two years back,

tented in a mobile free zone.

Katherine ferried her to the A&E;

tested for cardiac events in her blood.

some anomalies detected, told to take care.


i say i’m on the way.

she says she’ll be waiting.


there’s no traffic.

every light is green.

i see only you, waiting,

the tremors of your faltering heart

fuelling the uxorious engine pulling me to you.

many miles to cross. many frantic miles to go.


i can only see you, just you, waiting….


i arrive to see her shrouded.

They tried, they say, but….

everything fades to noise….

obscure i open and close, my petals dropping,

roots shrivelling in this sudden drought. 


when there is nothing, when I have been emptied,

I hear you say, “our daughters will be waiting for you.”

I turn knowing what I must be.


© Bhi 2023
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critique and comments welcome.
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A sad but not unusual story unfortunately we can’t be everywhere at the same time.
I liked the poem but please explain the significance of the low case i when referring to the past.
To be honest I didn’t see any reason why you used that especially since using low case seem to be a bit of a text fad at the moment which kind of detracts from the seriousness of this piece

Last edited 2 years ago by Guaj

Thats an interesting idea I guess using the i to diminish yourself like your unimportant in this situation?
I might have tried using second person voice for that or even passive detachment

Sometime ago I started writing a story about two characters one who could only refer to himself in third person and the other could only use passive detached
Of course they met in a psychiatrist’s waiting room. It was fun trying to write the dialogue 🙂


Can one say that a poem of this nature pleases? It does because it describes a circumstance applicable to so many passings, and in a way that did not abrade my senses. As Guaj says, you can’t be everywhere at the same time. As a matter of interest, mediums spend half their time telling the living that ‘nothing was left unsaid’ as the spirit of the deceased strives to stop the living worrying that they weren’t there at the deceased passing. My mother hung on and hung on while I travelled over a thousand miles by road and sea so… Read more »


I’m now discerning the pattern in your poetic series; and if I’m correct not necessarily based on personal experience? But if it all is, you must be the unluckiest person. That apart, a moving story – well told; notwithstanding the lower case i’s


Thanks B, I thought it was a sequence, and very interesting to see it developing; and yes, you have explained the i’s and I’s, in the context of the work.



That’s true, Bhi. Some of the stuff I write is posted both on ABC and UKA. Whilst on this site they hardly caused any ripples, on ABC many have been ‘cherried’ ((the same as ‘nibbed’) – 400 up to date – and sometimes chosen as Pick of the Day.
I see that yours has gone even further and has been chosen as Pick of the Week. Congratulations on the accolade.

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