Work in progress this post. Interestingly just now as I typed out this first poem, having written it out longhand through a number of revisions, I removed the middle third and it seems more complete. The part I excised was about her life which diffused the focus of the poem. I know I say this time and time again but you have to revise and be ruthless with your work.
Buzz & Neil are on the moon, it’s that July.
We watch them on the itv news,
my mother smokes a woodbine unmoved,
my father is out at work,
my brother understands the science,
I think we shall holiday in space next year.
My grandmother, who now lives with us,
watches the telly uncomprehending.
Lesions are forming in her brain,
she is losing her own space race,
memories jumble, her present is confusion.
I will come to dread visiting her in hospital,
on a ward of old women whose bodies
have outlived their minds.
I will be middle aged before I truly understand
just how sad this all is.
This second poem came out of a workshop at Junction 25, a poetry group I attend. We had to arrive with a blue print for a poem and the first line. We then swapped papers and attempted to write the other poet's poem. The set of directions I was given was very precise, it directed the number of lines in each stanza. I have to say I struggled with it. As you will see.
I have come to you late-much weathered,
transformed by chance and circumstance.
Time tends to favour alternate endings,
the unexpected - I stand here now.
I have come to you late - much weathered.
I stand here now – unexpected,
on the uncertain cusp of possibility.
I almost passed, stole past your gate,
but split second hesitation
made me falter, made me wait.
You are not newly minted,
magicked up from fire and earth,
rather, you carry your history,
the slow growth of cell and scar,
flames of passion, pain of loss.
All this shaped the human you are.
Perhaps two strangers can grow together,
the past a ghost upon our lips.
Have a good week.