Affair

How strange to hear myself talking.
There’s only the present left;
there’s only the dark.

Let it burn.

In front of our faces, everyone looks beautiful.
We’ll press the buttons, detonate those fuses.
We know the future is rushing towards us.

A found poem from The Siege by Helen Dunmore

Flight

We breathe into sleep, the low rumble of rain on the roof
the soft pulse of blood lullabying us.
Floor boards in our emptied house creak half-heard, and I sink
into the hinterland, neither here nor there.

I wake to the thud of the newspaper, the gurgle of the heating.
I lie for a while, half-remembered dreams dissolve
but the taste of them lingers
like salt on my tongue.

You are still sleeping so I creep down the stairs,
silence the kettle before it alarms you.
I hold the mug in my hands,
let it warm them.

I watch two summer-fat blackbirds breakfast on berries,
stripping the tree, whilst in the leaves,
a shoal of sparrows
dart and flash.

The dog races across morning-wet grass, high-fiving the day
he barks and dances a circle. The birds scatter
at the sound of him. I shield my eyes
as I watch them fly.

Trespassing

Now when I dry your hair
you have to sit.
I can no longer reach
the stretch of your body,
you have outgrown me.
Yet the rub of your head
beneath my fingers
remains as familiar as my own.
Unaware of the excuse,
you eat toast and drink tea
whilst I loosen strands, separate them,
blast warmth into them.

Requiem

In dreams as in footfalls, tread lightly
and know that ends will come
in time and tide.

Only dreams may last,
fading out lives
to half-written scraps of lost paper.

Camping under Aurora

We pitched our tent
in the haze
of the fading heat
As the sun sank
we drank cider
and sat low
in green chairs

My bare feet curled
into the grass
Dug into the earth
Grounded me

Later we slept,
rolled together
by the captured air
as it shifted beneath us,
held us up and away
from the cold

Our matched breathing
measured the shift
from day to night
and back again

Grace

There is a grace
to letting things be

People talk
of bravery
and fighting

But grace too
has beauty
and courage

Let it wash
and weave
its way

Let it be
Let it pass

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