Three times today I’ve gone to the window
to see what’s happening outside.
I know I’m to blame
but I hope there might be someone else
who’ll look out at the same time,
searching for another
who accepts their share of the fault.
No one’s there and I feel like an astronomer
hunting a dim, misty star
with an out of focus telescope
that he swivels around endlessly
while the star grows steadily fainter.
I know I’m to blame, but I want somebody
to blot out my guilt for just a moment,
like a cloud drifting across a mountain top
and then moving on. My heart’s been stolen
and replaced by a stone; I want to give it,
but the chunky block’s too heavy to lift.
I’ve hung a curtain over my bookshelves;
all those words have given us nothing
and rules and ethics drift away
even if we’ve ever read them.
I’ve unplugged the laptop
and shoved it far back under the sofa,
draped a towel over the television
and glued all my CDs shut as well,
but I can’t lock out what’s already inside.
The guilt is pouring out from everything;
it overflows the table
and loads my limbs like sodden branches.
Many times I’ve seen us falling through the floor,
tumbling and spinning over and over
while we try to hold on
and save ourselves from the gaping drop.
It’s not too late, I know, but we have to make a start;
it’s time to head back to the window.
(from “The God in the Box”, Agàpe Publications, 2003)
Poetry, poem, speculative poetry, science fiction poetry, Australian poetry, British poetry