© mjc 25 March 2020leave a comment
© mjc 25 March 2020leave a comment
© mjc 19 January 2020leave a comment
© mjc 27 december 2019leave a comment
It was supposed to get easier.
We count the days with increasing dread,
Reluctantly tearing the pages from our calendars
As the indifferent grip of time drags us ever closer
To the tenth month,
And the marking of its bitter harvest.
And the deep, abiding sadness that had dogged our steps caught up to us,
Caught our hands and spun us to look into its darkening gaze.
The ache sets in on the eighth cross.
And our happiness was tinged with a hurt
That no amount of makeup could erase from our eyes.
A hurt forever immortalised between gold-embossed covers of white leather,
As half of a face we barely recognised
Tried so hard to smile proudly from the middle of the frame.
And a part of the day that should have echoed with joy
Was shrunken, and stoic, and silent.
Twenty-seven steps of inevitability toward the unfaceable.
The world ended on the twenty-seventh cross.
The lights went out; the laughter ceased.
Songs forever changed their meaning.
The insult that the twenty-seventh cross brought twelve months later to add to our injury
Simply deepened the craters in the already war-torn surfaces of our worlds,
Scarred by the same disaster but in such different ways.
We carried its fraying wires and spiderwebbed glass gingerly in trepidatious hands,
Every tick of the second hand taking us away from the wounds of the tenth month.
At last emerging on the other side, we breathed our sighs of relief,
Only to have it explode in our faces just when we thought we were safe.
They all lied.
It was meant to get easier with time;
These vicious cuts were supposed to heal over
And leave scar tissue that was stronger for the experience.
They were not supposed to tear afresh
And soak our empty arms with the blood of our lacerated hearts,
With every step closer
To the tenth month.
Grandad (29 November 1922 - 8 October 2015)
Dad (16 January 1949 - 27 October 2015)
Nanna (28 July 1922 - 2 November 2016)
I love you and miss you all.
© mjc 26 October 2019leave a comment
I see you there.
Standing in the shadows, arms wrapped tightly around yourself;
Holding together the frayed and creaking pieces of your world.
I see the sinews standing starkly at your throat while you stare straight ahead,
Your jaw aching from clenching your teeth.
I see you, curtailing any motion because you don't know which way lies the fall.
I hear your cries.
The ones that escape your pursed lips,
The ones that evade your clutched pillow.
The ones that slide invisibly from your eyes in the shower,
In the hope that the water will wash away the evidence.
I hear the muffled sobs that slip from the cracks in your heart in the dead of night,
Only to fade and die in the space on the other side of the bed
That should never have been left empty.
I hear you, whimpering in your sleep.
I feel your rage.
The burning, blackening, impotent fury
Misdirected at the one who didn't know
Instead of the one who knew too well;
The one who should have known better.
I feel those whirling, unruly urges to strike with frenzied fists
At the phantom presence that still contaminates every aspect of your life.
I feel you and the force of your silent shrieks at the waste of your years
And the waste of your youth.
I know your depair.
Your stiff upper lip cannot keep your head above the waves,
And what lies beneath seems so black and so inviting,
That to yourself, you wonder...
What's so good about the opposite shore
That you must continually strive to reach it, anyway?
I know how harsh and empty words are upon the ears,
When they come from lips that have never spoken from a mouth dry with nameless worry.
I know how long your road ahead seems when you cannot see
How far you have already come.
I know you. I have been you.
It's such a little thing, to change the colour of a heart.
The click of a mouse, the tap of a phone...
This button instead of that.
Purple hearts, all.
Purple hearts for the battle-scarred.
© mjc 21 September 2019leave a comment
Daughter, sister, aunt, godmother, friend; self-confessed hermit, confirmed cat person, sporadic baker, irreformable yarncrafter, voracious reader; occasional wit, voluble shower vocalist, frequent sacrifice on the altar of brain-to-mouth filter fails, unrepentant purveyor of puns and dad jokes, writer and poet.
I have always lived by the theory that no matter what you do for a living - if you are compelled to write, if you wake up in the night to scrawl the contents of your dreams on a notebook beside the bed, if no event in your life seems complete without you recording it, if you are drawn to comment upon the world - then you are a writer.
These are my words.