Two men sat gradually
down on a park bench, knees creaking.
One said to the other
– You do not look that old,
Your face is strong.
His companion mused awhile then said
– I seek a jewel in every moment of the day always
I find some.
The other clicked his dentures
into place, he said
– Your faith is strong.
The absence is as wide and full
as cupboards with clothes suddenly
abandoned, a line of footwear, mouths
open, waiting to be foot fed, a wristwatch
They lie who say the missing return
in the slope of a child’s gesture, the tone
of a smile, in photographs weary
with the telling.
These are pixels that emerge randomly, uselessly,
They cannot make a presence throb.
Memories sharp as rose thorns snap up
from the undergrowth, mired and marred,
we slither, we slip, we laugh like crows.
Nobody told us
Mourning wears motley.
When it came to the hands,
The Maker said, “This piece seeks
It has decided
it will not be informed by majesty.
Make the hands small, counterfeit,
they will never hold a sceptre
never nestle a shepherd’s crook.”
… And so it was.