Absence


 
 
 
 
 
 

I
 

As the warmth of the day crawled away
and Dionysus loosed our tongues
the conversation slipped to sliding doors.
 

Is it possible to miss a life not lived?
 
 

II
 

I knew you
in the crude cave markings daubed by thick
Neanderthal fingers, in sand grains beneath
the soles of slaves at the foot of Pyramid labours.
 

I knew you
in Inca trails, in Pucara temples in Tiwanuka
and Titicaca, in stratospheric particle matter
before and after the fire starter.
 

I knew you
in Bluestone caves, in sinews of the brave
who carried them to Pentre Ifan, in their deity
and in their deaths on Preseli’s heathered hills.
 

I knew you
as a stripling yew, in its sap as it grew
and bled, trickling amber down husky bark
to churchyard daffodil beds.
 

I knew you
in the sparkling streams of Mynydd Mawr,
in Gelert’s yelp, Llewellyn’s grief, in Arthurian
tales and Cerridwen’s poet child.
 

I knew you
in vellum maps, stained beneath the fingers
of Columbus’s wanderlust and in the stolen
Spanish gusts that filled El Draque’s sails.
 
 

III
 

As the warmth of the day
crawled back and Dionysus’
wrath lay heavy on our tongues
 

I knew
that had I lived the life
I miss, I would have known
only the gelid absence of you.
 
 

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Filed under Free Verse, Poetry

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