365 Poems/3 – Too Soon
I’m scared that it’s too soon to laugh,
that I haven’t mourned enough
to make up for the loss of you.
I didn’t hug you the day you died.
I hadn’t hugged you for a while, actually.
I always thought there’d be plenty of time.
No. That’s a lie. I didn’t think at all
because you, dying, was inconceivable.
Your coat, the green Arctic explorer one
with the gigantic hood, trimmed with fur,
still hangs at the bottom of the stairs.
Magazines I haven’t had the guts to cancel
are piled under the phone.
I always say I’ll take them to Oxfam,
at the weekend, then never do.
Is it okay for me to move on, little one?
Can I stop at the market and start a conversation
with something other than a sigh?
Your mother has given away all of her black clothes,
and has taken to wearing cornfield yellow.
Black is all I buy nowadays.
I remember when you bought me
that expensive sandstone shirt.
I wore it until the elbows came through.
Then you patched it for me.
You patched it three times.
I’m wandering these days, tears always ready to tip,
because everywhere I look there is something
to spark up a memory of you.
But good things can and do happen.
That’s what you had written, in pen,
on your bedroom wall behind the headboard.
I just need to let the good things in,
bit by bit, until they can sit with my psyche
and be comfortable.