At times like this, my mind aches back
The burst-banked evenings of that year;
Where long and brittle shadows
Divided silence, split the skies –
I watch, crossed here, the days flow past
And marvelled at the pace
Of how we met, quite by chance
And negotiated trickery.
The old language of those hearts
Somehow survived the journey –
Fibre-optically, tossed down lines,
And shot from screen to screen
As was the habit of the time,
We spurted lines from fingertips
And pulled ourselves in poses.
As in vain I stammered from afar
And found myself, in real lives
Self-aware on strange train lines.
That time, as distant as your old home,
Bright eyes, red lips, a bed, that drink –
Things changed, somehow.
We glanced downcast and tried to think
Of how to talk to those we knew
And deliver us from news.
Yet somehow here, in retrospect
It barely changed, the day’s the same.
Back then, my daughter’s eyes were inconceivable.
Back then, someone else lived in our home.
You stop the boat and turn to me
“All too soon we may well tread
The bitter pastures of the dead –
Let’s do it all,
Let’s do it all again.”