On the Green

Guiltily he picks at a hole in the knee of his jeans and looks up from that same daydream once again, while something unseen moves through the room which leaves his stomach tense and lip bitten.

Nothing will take away the past, but no matter how long ago it was, in the mind it is but a moment ago, vivid, real, reinforced by countless hours reliving the same memories. He shudders and pulls the blanket around his shoulders, staring back into the void.

There is no peace from the labyrinth once you cross the threshold, once you lose your way. He knows that the only way out is to go forward, but what horrors it contains he cannot tell.

The void calls once more, the delicate seduction of the voice of memory, that sweet oblivion of self-destruction.

Come to me my love, and we shall walk together again. All you have to do is remember how it felt.

He tries to resist but the memories are strong, beautiful, sweet memories of sunlight and summer days, walking gently through the park while the wind dances in her hair and her skirts flow like waterfalls of silk.

His resolve is undone, and drifting ever on in her arms he remembers the taste of strawberries on her lips, gently mixed with champagne.

The cold creeps in under the edge of the blanket, but he remains unaware, its tendrils wrapping around his throat, sneaking under his clothes until he starts to fall asleep.

So tired now,’ he thinks. ‘Perhaps we should go indoors?

No, stay with me here, my love. Stay with me and hold me, don’t ever let me go.’


Among friends

The fire cracks in the homely hearth
As memories and stories flow,
Recounting each our winding path;
Long years and days divide, we know,
Yet always we return at last
To ties which bound us long ago,
The memories of childhood past:
Of winter games amidst the snow.

When in some autumn year we meet,
And talk again of years before,
Will we in memories repeat
These patterns which the flames restore?
Of cherry whisky, tartan pleats,
Bad music choices fast deplored,
The plans which may yet come to be
And those that by the wayside fall.

If I should drift across the sea
Sharp memories of this may fade,
But always something here will be
That will not wane with groaning age;
A lifetime built of memories
The sum of which I’ll gladly pay
Whether my life shall set me free
Or drag me to an early grave.