She was like an echo, all around me, but never quite there. When I whispered her name in the darkest hours, those most personal tickings of the clock, I could never be sure if she heard me; if she even cared, as my breaths whipped around the space that should have been she.

There were, of course, times when she almost opened up. Almost. But always at the last second, a fraction of a moment, the mask would slip back into place and the laughter subside to the ricocheting echoes I knew them to be.

I thought she loved me, as best she could, anyway. She tried, I was sure she did. I hoped she did. But it was no real surprise that night when I walked into my unlit home and called her name to no response. I couldn’t be sure she’d gone until the dawn broke and my eyes could confirm what my ears wouldn’t.

Little pieces of her remained: memorabilia of our once union; snippets of lives lost to the seas of time, but nothing definite, nothing to prove our joint existence. And even years later long after our short affair evaporated, I heard the echoes of her breaths. I thought they were hers. I hoped they were hers.

Echoes: weren’t we all.

Precious Things

Locked away forever,
Asleep in a polished, mahogany box;
But I still hear it.
Oh, how I still hear it.
You see,
The wood vibrates with it,
A steady thump,
The sideboard it rests upon,
The one with the wooden legs,
Conducts the sound through creaking, groaning floorboards,
Then on into the rotting joists as a booming cacophony of pain.
I cover my ears:
But it won’t go away.
And everyday,
Every single day,
I take the little brass key in fumbling fingers,
Twist and turn it in the candlelight,
And muse,
And think,
And strain:
Should I let it out?
But a heart is a precious thing and yours more than most.
‘I’m never releasing you!’ I shout to the walls,
Fume to the shadows.
‘You said you were mine!’ I cry,
And put the key away deep in my old jacket pocket.
At least, for one more day.

Whispered Loves

I captured a whisper,
Such a delicate expression,
And so quiet,
So very quiet.
Prudence told me to hold it tight,
Hold it real close,
As it breezed across
The cage of my palms.
But curiosity is a terrible trait,
A constant pressure,
And I had to hear its words.
So, I opened those palms
Just a touch,
A fraction of a whisker:
It escaped.
‘I love you’ it shushed,
As it drifted away
An ephemeral dream.
I didn’t even get chance
To whisper goodbye.

Lonely Nights

Hush, my child,

Your tears deserve much more.

Tenuous droplets of hope,

They pass me by unchecked,

Unseen, ignored.

Shuttered and lonely,

I walk the streets,

Making un-light of the luminance,

When I should be with you.

No choice, I plead!

But there is always choice.

Lonely nights for us both.


Beyond the valleys

And the rivers

And the streams

Lies a waterfall eclipsing

Every one of my dreams.

Cascading through mists

And falling through time,

How I long for those waters;

How I hope they’ll be mine.

Surrounded by thorns

And deepest ravines

With a kissing of berries,

As rubies it seems,

There I’ll be welcomed;

There I’ll be loved,

As I leap the beyond

In search of your love.