Dearest,

Sharing this short story I wrote a while ago, in honor of Woolf’s birthday today (January 25).


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Autumn Morning in London

The sky is pale baby blue.

Everything still seems to be sleeping

as the sun dances on the yellow

and orange and green leaves.

A lonely train rumbles by out of sight

and a plane ducks down, flying low,

ready to land, somewhere nearby.

You are asleep somewhere under the same sky

while I sit here, nursing a coffee

and gazing out at the familiar and yet

alien landscape that is not mine

and another world away from you

and me, another someone I could

have been.

The Things You Miss

it’s funny the things that you start to miss –

a familiar bed, the books stacked up on the floor

a desk of one’s own

and a coffee pot in the morning.

An empty house and the wide open countryside

winter walks, dripping wet,

wellies caked in mud,

huddling by the AGA

and cooking, baking

to my heart’s content.

Last minute meals and easy cooking,

singing and dancing in the kitchen,

making something just because,

wandering around in dressing gowns

and drinking hot chocolate before bed.

the peace and quiet that comes with ‘home’,

but what is home, after all,

but those familiar things –

the things you start to miss

and crave to have around you again?

The Itch

feeling an itch, a longing to be there again
to be down by the sea
standing on those cliffs
and feeling the sea breeze on my face
yes I’m by the sea here
but it’s not quite the same
it’s not my place of dreams
my place of magic and wonder
I need to be there again
to digest, to breathe
to just be
I need to go home.

I Wish

I wish I could explain
just how much I miss you
how I’m longing to hear your voice
again for a little while
to have the comfort of it
a little longer
I wish I could voice
the words I want to say
that I miss you
and it overwhelms me at the most unexpected times
when I’m not asking for it at all
when I feel that these feelings are past.

Pining

I pine for summer

but now I’m craving

the familiarity of autumn books

that seem to shine orange and red

and brown and smell like warm drinks

and plenty of layers;

stories that glow warmth

and make me feel at one again.

The Photograph

in the photograph, you look
just like her, it’s like looking
in a mirror, the only thing
separating us is time
and the fact that I never knew you
and you’re in black and white
frozen forever in posterity
hands clasped, eyes gazing
at something just off camera
and I can only see
what’s reflected in your eyes,
while I live
in a colour world
that you don’t know.

Blues

 

and then, without warning, as autumn

arrived and enveloped them,

a sadness swept over her,

one that couldn’t be explained

as it pressed down on her

beating against her chest

so that her limbs became heavy

and her brain thick

with a longing and sadness

for something she couldn’t

quite put her finger on.

The Old Photo

I

The photo has been torn in half

and then clumsily repaired with some tape

that has now become brittle and yellow.

It’s hard to tell if the tear

was deliberate

although each half

shows a figure, the tear right down the middle

as if done in anger or hate

before being repaired

by an unknown hand

and then stored carefully away.

The colours are faded now

the sepia tired and worn

a relic from the past

with a story

no one can tell.

 

II

The photo is in sepia

the corners are curling

and it is battered

as if it has survived many moves

and been handled many times

passing from person to person,

cherished and loved as time has passed

and memory has begun to fade

identity from those who see it.

Now the figure is nothing more than that –

a curious relic from the past

a figure someone once knew

an image once cherished.

Now, it is passed over, from hand to hand

curious eyes look at it, marvel at the figure

without knowing who it is.

 

III

It’s hanging on the wall

a portrait from another time

a black and white photograph

of a girl staring candidly

at the camera

eyes deep, a fixed expression.

There are pearls around her neck

and her hands are clasped

as she stares at the camera

as if staring into the very soul

of the one who took it.