Surprisingly, I hear wind in the eaves,
smell freshly cut grass, and feel morning rain
dropping on the paving slabs. Quietly,
I take small pleasures: sparkling puddle nights;
friendliness; remembered anniversaries;
and white flowers sprayed on late May hedges.
Normally, I’m full of anxieties –
or if not full, full enough. Routinely,
now, the London days are easy and free,
non-threatening, reassuring and calm;
and the trains, the petrol, the rope and heights
are covered by a rising tide of balm.
The waters will, of course, fall back again.
For now? I’ll savour lifejoy’s summonses.
Dungeness, May 2018
Edwina is my rinkydink. She and I
walk a fine line: hours at a time.
She talks, listens, and watches me cry
hours at a time. Hours at a time.
We’ve discussed my ingrowing multi-layered
sadnesses, the malfunctioning neurones,
the crosses and noughts, the things I fear,
the petrol, the rope, the heights, and the trains.
The scrappy form paper I’m about to sign
records my treatment plan. It précises
cataract wisdoms shapelessly aligned
to the vapid news feed of my insane days.
It shrinks the agonisingly tangled
months of unrelenting mental pain
into three sloping lines of banal,
barely legible, longhand chlorophane.
“What is this for?” I asked. “It’s just paperwork”,
Edwina said blasé. “Yes, but what is it for?”
I raised my gaze. She gave me a blatant look.
“It’s for”, she said, “the Coroner.”