We trudged the grounds of a country house
under a featureless sky
as stark trees bled out with morning rain
and what light there was started to die,
and every time you grabbed for my hand
I felt a little thrill,
I’m glad to feel it still –
I spent half a life being bad at that.
And here we were, noses to wind,
simply happy, which nobody is,
but as close as I’ll ever find.
And in came her message. And later that night
I looked at it, then at her profile:
smiley-faced. Husband gone. Three gorgeous kids.
Was thinking of you! Been a while…
I’m planning a trip. You were so good at that –
That’s why, I guess. You okay? xxx
What would you do? I tapped out Hello! x
and wasn’t sure what else to say
so we messaged for hours, saying every last nothing.
Her latest one sits in my phone,
unread and pointless. I wish her the best,
I promise. I’m sad she’s alone
and claiming to like it. I’m glad she’s still there
where little came right, nor would,
in the Lincolnshire village she’s never left,
but which still makes her happy. I could
have stayed there too, raising bunnies (she loves them),
and learned a local trade.
And I probably would’ve stayed, too. Christ!
I probably would’ve stayed…