Dialect

Ah did gie mah hert tae you
forever oan mah sleeve
if ye wid bit tak’ me in yer arms
and ne’er let me lea

I did gie mah soul tae you
it glistened in th’ light
if ye wid bit tak’ it tae yer heart
forever mak’ it right

I did gie mah voice tae you
on endless nights alone
in bitter tears ‘n’ softened prayers
the ravens hae noo flown

I did gie mah een tae you
and noo thay ainlie see
through salted wounds ‘n’ lonely words
now roiled wi’ th’ sea

I did gie mah loue tae you
and aye dae tae this day
my hert aches tae be wi’ you
on this ‘n’ ilka day

Rue

I’m glad the dispensary delivers to me at home
on Thursdays
I can sit glazed to try and drive the sorrow down
my haunted dreams overtaking
my vision by night and by day
I have Small Blue Thing on repeat
and Ms. Vega sings it to my soul
I am scattering like light
My eyes, still hazel, no longer shine
but glisten wet and near opaque
no longer windows to anywhere of import
I’ll sit in the shower until the water runs cold
fetal on the floor with my hands around my knees
tears washing freely from my face
I wonder if you cry, but doubt you do
least of all for me
if you ever think of me at all
I know I’ve lost my mind to grief
to bereavement for the still living
the melancholy deepens every day
The ban-sìth keens at the door now, or merely
In my head
Where I would only you could knock


Ah did gie mah hert tae you
forever oan mah sleeve
if ye wid bit tak’ me in yer arms
and ne’er let me lea

Carton

I’m trying to pack up your things today
the things you left behind
There’s makeup and your coffee cup
for the cat lady in you
There’s clothing and that painting
that you gave me
will be boxed up too
and the photos removed from the wall
If I can get through the panic
that gathers me in its frightful embrace
I’ll mail it all to you when you leave
or have someone do it
This is harder than expected

Imperceptible

I am getting fucked up now
There’s no method to this madness
only loss and grief
and the judgment of those who don’t
share in it
you broke me beyond belief
in your sinister silence
and longstanding selfishness
your callous heart
so now I wait
in incongruous despair
some dark nightfall or ebon stare
If I fall today
would you notice or care?
or would perhaps this be your goal
to end your own discomfort
without risk or empathy
I was only ever bound to you
in these chains I willingly gave
so, tear me asunder; let your vengeance be nigh
I am but some phantom in your life
of no import but that of a moth
yet to your love’s flame
I am forever drawn
I’m fucked up now
no dream or sacred melody comes
just this lost and lonely
as if I never was

Advent

I am coming, my departed loves
Cassandra and Gabriel and Dante and Belle
and you! Although you be not gone to that sleep
but to you I am gone regardless
I am coming soon
Wait for me there that our love may be renewed
there are only the two of us left now
Wash and myself
and the insufferable grief I feel
for your silence and callousness
is immeasurably made worse
by this loss today
My reasons to continue have been halved
in the fell swoop of fate
and a malicious universe
if I have defiance it is soft and broken
like the last words of the condemned
and not so much a railing ‘gainst night
but a rolling into it
I am coming, my departed loves
let them mix my ashes with yours
let then, my capacity for love — unparalleled
be the legacy of this life
if my ability to love is beyond measure
then so too is my capacity for pain
and this grief feels like
the camel’s straw
added to the load you placed there
these five months past
I am coming, my departed loves
the dead and the silent one
I am coming and there is no blaze of light
I know that well from experience
and if there was a heaven then you would be there
all of you
in some personal realm of love and joy
but alas there is not
and we depart as alone as we come to the world
Yet I journey
I am coming
I am coming
I am coming

Elegy for Dante

This is now etched in my memory and my soul
this 0745 moment when you passed in my arms
I never owned you, you were a chosen and faithful
Companion when there was nobody else
My dear Dante, Wash and I sit disconsolate now
your toys strewn around your room
and only two nights ago we played
with your favourite laser pointer
I remember that first time I saw you
in the shelter, a kitten still, and barely able to walk
you’d been hit by a car
you threw yourself at me as best you could
and lavished me with affection
I fell in love with you in that moment
and you were far too young
for this to happen now
I brought you thousands of miles
and you were ever at my side
through thick and thin and tragedy you were there
your love an obvious joy
and people might think – just a cat
but to me one of my dearest friends
a family member
and now there are just the two of us
Wash and I
Wait for me there, I will come
Wait for me there, it will not be too long
Wait for me there, I love you

Venus

Her name is old Hebrew and means
the star of the morning
and you can see that in her eyes;
when her blue stare in love’s embrace prevails
and she was aptly named
for in her light all darkness was banished
Yet now, in the growing gloom —
this slide to despairing madness —
seems irrevocable in the loss of her light
and the unending dusk of loss
deepening shadows without her candle
against the Cimmerian shade
I hold not defiance to this funereal realm
but wait instead in some lost dream
of the rise of her star again
though whence she comes I know not
O’er my tortured brow her light has gone
where once shone bright her radiance
now crepuscular dimness and moon’s lunacy reign
with no guiding torch I am lost in the blackness
of this atramentous sphere
I pray for the star of the morning
I pray to her in my words and thoughts and tears
I pray and entreat in unheard cries
for the return of the incandescence of her gaze
whither I now depart or abdicate
I cannot say; some unknown island or sea
unlit by her star and guidance
no rudder nor compass to advise
yet dreams still come of her blaze
through the desolate umbra – a beacon
of glory and the bittersweet remembrance
of warmth.
Star of morning I entreat thee
Star of morning I pray to thee
Star of morning I beseech thee
Star of morning I implore thee
Star of morning I love thee
Star of morning have mercy on me

Parcels

I have boxes with your things
those you left behind and those you never saw
gifts and knickknacks so carefully chosen
clothes in the closet, dresses and tops
a collection of panties in the drawer
where you left them here
as if waiting forever in some hopeless dream
I have a million kisses
kept safe just for you
and if spurned, they will go to no other
I have your hairbrush and your makeup
your coffee cup sits forlorn on the shelf
empty of everything but air
I have your pictures on the wall
Your blue eyes gazing serenely
back from those frames
you pervade my dreams each night
and I wake with wet cheeks and sorrowed sobs
You haunt my days like a spectre
of life’s greatest joy lost
and fresh aches greet each morning in grief
I make coffee in silence and measure
the creamer for myself in the portion size
you always had, that I always was so careful about
I have a million embraces waiting
and a million walks while holding hands
and I cannot give them to another
my heart lies in a million pieces
but still it is yours alone

Misgivings

I am afraid of the world
since you’ve been gone, I have learned
to fear everything
I am afraid of the light and of the dark
I am afraid of life, and in terror of living
I am afraid of the sun and of the rain
I am afraid of people and of being alone
I am apprehensive and balancing on a blade’s edge
It’s hard work – living in fear like this
it saps away at your foundations, digging out
to leave you collapsing in the river of time
I am exhausted by my creeping unease
I am afraid of butterflies and of birdsong
I am afraid of remembering to breathe
I am afraid of television and of books and of music
I shiver in the heat in my fear
I am afraid of your blue-eyed gaze and of the memory
of your skin
I am afraid of today and of tomorrow
I live in trembled panic of yesterday
and mostly I am afraid
of you

Terzanelle 0.2

A soft teardrop falls
In some random default
A soft teardrop falls

In its wake wildflowers grow
In salted earth and darklight flow
A soft teardrop falls

And love lies fertile
Remembered in dreams
In salted earth and darklight flow

And passing as summer
Forgot in time’s begone
And passing in summer

Remembrance of kisses
And the tears from above
Remembrance of kisses

Tears from above
A soft teardrop falls
Remembrance of love
This long silent caul