With my eyes closed

Night walking. Head hazy. The streets warped like an Escher picture.  Yet my routefinder kicks in. My feet walk a path they’ve walked too many times before. 

Third lamppost on the left, take the snicket Dark and narrow I snag on brambles falling free, skin torn, stinging. Head for the light, the other side. Stumble on loose paving stones down the steps to arrive on your street. 

Quiet. Calm. Unchanged.

I sit on the pavement. Hug my knees tight. Here again. 


Does your neck still burn from the rope I gave you. Do you think of me when you struggle to swallow. Your Adams Apple bobbing against what’s no longer there. Squeezing past the memory. The token I gave you to show I cared. Is it tucked in a draw, at the back with the socks. Beneath lining paper, pulled up at the corner. Do you reach to touch it. A repeated action you never let go. Grasping for nothing. Grasping at skin. Does your neck still burn. I wonder.

No Entry

Heavy skies, rain threatened. The bitter wind embraced her. Swept her sideward as she pushed forwards. Walking past the park the roundabout revolved, spiralling the ghost of lost children. The empty swings cried out. She wouldn’t look. Wouldn’t turn. Pressed on. The wind accelerated, spinning her ungainly. She fell at the gates. Paint flaking, colours fading. The padlock clamped tight. She gripped the railing, fingers white. Icy tears brimmed. Reaching through, she felt his small hand. Traced his fingers with her own. Tried to hold on.