Goodbye Is Not An Option

This is a collaboration poem, I’ve worked on lately for a funeral service to say goodbye to a husband of forty two years: we came to the conclusion that it’s just not possible.

We will always be together,
Just waiting here apart
You will always have the most of me
Within your loving heart

We will always be together,
Even though we are apart
I will think of you, and talk to you
You rest inside my heart

You had a one way ticket, up into the sky
But your ride came early, I really don’t know why
They took the man I wanted, into the clouds above
and now I miss you terribly,
My husband, friend, my love.

Dear Mother

You fed us, clothed us, kept us warm

Held us, taught us, showed no scorn

Every day you gave your time

your life, your love, your soul, your rhyme.

You never once had idle hands

You worked two jobs to meet demands

and never once did you despair,

complain that life just wasn’t fair

The only wish you ever dreamed

was to be a mother; wife esteemed

and so you gave up all your life

for small desires, full with strife

I didn’t understand your needs

and now my heart, for you it bleeds

Your cherished girl, lost out the blue

a husbands illness moved him too

And now you live your life alone

with only me to call your own

A life confused, and filled with space

I’m sorry, I can’t take their place.

Though just because I can’t be smothered

Doesn’t mean I love you less, dear mother.


The slow tide of time

There lies a sadness
which lingers
Hovering over my heart
Hiding within my soul
And it haunts me
Both day and night

A cloud of stillness
Sitting on the face of time
Applying resistance to hands
Reaching out for the future

Seconds are dragged
Held hostage to the present
Minutes that trickle
Into stagnant hours
Flecked with fragments of gloom
Of despair

So I sit
And I wait
For the inevitable change
Which never ever comes

Beyond repair

It barely shows at first
Just a hairline fracture
Nestled beneath the rim

The slow erosion over time
Overuse making it’s mark
On creamy porcelain skin

Pressures of everyday life
Gnawing against it’s existence
Forcing the blemish to grow

Branching out across the belly
Of this old china teapot
Weakening both surface and below

We see them of course
Yet don’t worry about the strain
Continuing to fill it to the brim

As long as it’s job is done
The outcome still the same
We won’t question the state within

Until that one day
Water will seep from the cracks
Dampen wooden worktops
And split open from the pressure
Only then do we acknowledge
And despair at it’s demise

A Morning Broken

Shivering in thin cotton sheets
The morning breaks into a thousand shards
Glimmers of the moments past
Those stuck in the now
And reflections of what will be
All swim to the surface
Intermingling with hope
Of a better day
It sings under foot
Allowing the birds to warble out its theme tune
Another song of the sparrow going unnoticed
By the ears of passers-by
And you all alone sleeping
As the world collapses around her

So close I can breathe you

You are near to me
yet so far away,
If I close my eyes tightly
I can hear the rhythm of your breath,
See the rise of your chest
Can reach over to stroke your clammy skin
luminescent, in the moonlit room.

If I inhale too deeply I can taste you.
Suck in the scent of you,
absorb your sweat
on the tip of my tongue
Making me want to rest
my ear against your chest .
Hearing the life force of you
beating against my brain.
Humming into my thoughts
filtering through logic
and seeping into desire.
I can feel the fire of yearning within me,
fighting for an end to the addiction,
jostling for a cure that I do not really crave.
My lips tingling for your kiss as you lay beside me.
A body shaking to uncover your touch.
When I wake
I find myself empty
Just like the bed without you.

Approaching Acheron

I am writing this because you are not
I’m writing because your tongue lays still,
at the side of your mouth
I am writing because you are gone
Shipped back to those lonely shores of time
Of mortality
Awaiting the boat to collect
Ready to press that coin deep into the palm of Charon
Eager to journey to the underworld
Explore the depths of her caverns
You bound towards the idle existence
Caught up in the notion of ease,
of diminished responsibility
no sense of care
Your desire to ride the ebb and flow of oblivion
To leave without valediction
And yet I still hope for your return
That my voice might still reach you
As I follow defiantly,
The ladder thick with flesh and bone

Fading presence


You slip

Away from me

Every night

Every morning

Every hour

of your absence


I try to hold you

Etching your face

into my eyelids

Imploring my ear drums

Not to forget

Your sweet dulcet tones

Beseeching my body

Not to dull the tingle

The shiver of you


Yet with each passing day

Each passing hour

You slowly fade

and die in me