Tuesday, 8 March 2011

International Women's Day

A year ago today, I attended an Open Mic Poetry evening, the theme of which was International Women’s Day.  I have completely forgotten what I performed there – it might have been the one about Krishnan Guru-Murthy  (one of the ones about Krishnan Guru-Murthy - sigh).  That evening lives in my memory as being filled with the sparkling treasures of the talented poets who shared their work; but also because I wrote this when I got home, bursting with inspiration and bursting for a wee from the latte and the nerves.  My darling son had cried for me when I left the house that evening.  Tonight, he was stung by a wasp.  Tough times.  My precious boy, this is for you.

The Rock That’s In The Sea

Because he was crying, I made him a promise
Although he’d never know I would keep it
But his cheeks were two rosy oceans
Into which his love was pouring. ‘Don’t go, Mummy,’
He murmured, picking the shards of his heart from the carpet
Don’t go and read poems to those people.’
The bleeding pieces lay in his hands and I took them
And put them with mine

So with verses circling, I read to him first
But his breath hitched as his bursting lungs fought
For space in the cage of his chest
He clung to my body as if to climb back inside
And for a moment, I wished it – but the cord was cut
And the story was up, so I left
Trailing promises of kisses like a wake

                 -  -  -   -   -   -   -   -   -  -  -  -

Later I kissed Daddy at the door – once, then twice,
Thinking, Men are not so bad after all
Upstairs, I thought about Ophelia while my feet
Sought slippers and I sighed and kept my word. 

My child, my son, the one I weep to see
Lay in a patch of light through a green leaf
His cat reclined, supine, in his arms
Like a lover; ‘Brow,’ she said, and raised her head,
But nothing more than an idle paw escaped the embrace
Of the boy she adored. His upturned face
Moved with the dream he wove
And I stroked the motion of his lips
Thinking, Michelangelo’s got nothing on this
My selfish heart longed to shake him awake
Just to prove my promise kept
But all, and most of all, I wished
To tumble headlong into his head, and take his hand
And run and run until we reached the ocean
Our tears had made

© Muriel Lavender
March 2010

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