Forever

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How long has it been?

You picked a night with a barely there, waxing moon and a sky streaked indigo. I can see the stars above and reflected in the water all around. You picked a night warm enough to sit outside and not feel cold, the first night like this in forever.

It feels like forever.

You always did that, chose the right place and the right night, or perhaps we were always lucky. It used to feel like magic, like the time I started the car and Liam Gallagher sang, ‘I don’t believe that anybody feels the way I do about you now…’ and we just sat and grinned at each other. Those things always happened when you were there with me.

How many years then?

How many years since we last walked this place, sat next to this very lake? It hasn’t changed much, but it isn’t the same. We catch up with each other’s lives, like long lost friends, reminiscing about those perfect, magical times. We laugh about nose twitching and fireworks in Blackpool. You sing to me, like you did in Devon, when you made me drive your car and scared me silly. And you hold my hand.

How long have you been gone now?

I don’t want to count those years. We walk.

A new house, you tell me, a new start. You ask me to hear you out, and I will. A new start that could finally be ‘us’. You’ve made me dinner. You remembered the last time I cooked for you and made me the same meal. You’ve even chopped the vegetables as I did so long ago, even though you laughed at me while I did it… ‘regimented veg’, you said back then.

‘You’re so lovely,’ you say. ‘You haven’t changed at all. Still so beautiful… still my angel.’

You’ve brought me back to reality now. You’ve made me angry.

I’m not the same. My life has gone through so many changes since you last held my hand, so many trials. You broke my heart and disappeared, because you didn’t know how to be brave. You left me alone and hurt, and you broke every promise you ever made me. When I needed you more than anything in the world, you were gone. In your absence, my world fell apart and it was one hell of a journey to put it back together again. I have been braver than you have ever been, and I did it all without you.

How long has it been since I loved you?

I don’t know when that changed, but it did. I used to pray for the day that you would be there again, to help me rebuild myself… I used to think that you were the only one I would ever feel safe with, certainly the only one I would ever love like that.

But I was brave enough for both of us, and I started over. I made my own peace and found my own happiness. My new start came a while back now; yours is not mine, and I am not your angel.

How long will it be until I see you again?

Probably forever.

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Reverse

[rɪˈvəːs]

verb

1) Move backwards

2) Make (something) the opposite of what it was

Synonyms: alter, change

noun

1) A complete change of direction

2) The opposite to that previously stated

Synonyms: opposite, contrary, converse, inverse, obverse, antithesis

 

Brake… back up… reverse…

Run away, build a wall, we’ve been here before.

My heart says yes and my head says run.

Don’t

Don’t snap

Don’t say it… you’re hurt, I know

Don’t open your mouth

Don’t panic, breathe slow

Don’t ask the question,

Don’t catch the eye

Hold back your words

And try not to cry

Stop up the tears,

Please, don’t speak out loud

Don’t say what you want to

Keep your head bowed

Maintain the silence

Stay quiet, keep the peace

It won’t be forever

These feelings will cease

Close up your doorway

And then your heart

Lock it up tightly

And try to restart

Valentine

I love…

Oh, how I love.

Brighter than the stars… wilder than the sea.

You’re there, and I’m grinning. 17 years old and head over heels,

Wondering what comes next but not really caring, because…

You.

Just you.

This smile that’s going to break my face one day,

But you’ll be there to put it back together

Like you fixed my trust. Did you fix it, or did I?

Does it matter? Because I trust you, either way. I trust you

With my life. My life, which is your life. One great big adventure

With explorations and discoveries that make me feel as if

I landed on the moon.

I’m here in the heavens and you are the stars. So bright, so close

That I’m on fire. You are my fire starter

Burning up the skies until

I

Can’t

Breathe.

I don’t want to. I want to stop time, right here, right now.

I hold my breath

And everything slows. Your face, suspended

In front of mine for an eternity.

Exactly as it should be, right where you belong.

You are home.

You are where I’m meant to be. I’m here, with you, and we are ‘us’.

Stronger together, funnier, louder, more alive. We’re winning

At life. At love… We’ve won the world.

A whole new world. So many memories to make

And time stretching out before us.

I am in love. You are my heart and

We love.

Oh…

How we love.

 

The Wrong Question?

I’ve been trying to answer the question, ‘Why do you frighten me?’ and I’ve been getting nowhere fast.

I enjoy your company, I adore your face… your humour entertains me, your charm beguiles me. Talking with you is wonderful, learning about you and sharing with you feels just right. But not talking with you is also fabulous; walking hand in hand with few words spoken feels like I’ve found something I’d lost. No awkward silences, just happy ones.

Being close to you drives me to distraction, every single time… The thought of your touch before it happens thrills me. Every single time I see you I am bowled over again, and every day that I don’t see you, I miss you.

And there I have my answer. You don’t frighten me, missing you frightens me. I don’t ever want you not to be there.

New Year

2018

‘New Year, new me’, I’m seeing, ‘New story to begin’

But let’s not shelve the year just yet to let the new one in.

A year of faith and growing, a year over so fast,

A year of making memories so sweet they’ll surely last.

Some experiences uncomfortable but still a learning means

Some sad goodbyes I’ve uttered, the end of hopeful dreams.

But in their place has flourished relationships anew

With promise underlying, and old friends proving true.

I will not write a new book. My life won’t ‘start again’,

I truly wouldn’t want it to; I will reflect, and then

I’ll start another chapter, with characters we’ve met;

My lovely little family, who never do forget

The value of each other even when we’re far apart.

Advice, a shoulder, just some time to listen. In my heart

I know I’ll always have them, and soon, some others too;

This coming year my family is about to grow and bloom.

And you. Your heart is honest, and seems to mirror mine,

This New Year I will get to see just how we intertwine.

Let’s welcome in the New Year, sending promise far and wide

And look forward to memories with good people at my side.

Recurring Nightmares

Back in that room – a dark, cold room. I can still see the outline of the window, but it seems smaller now. It’s just a square of pale light, the only light in the room, barely 8 inches wide.

The train is passing again; the room seems to shake and the noise is loud enough that I know, without speaking, that my voice would not be heard anyway. Not that it matters, when there is no one to listen.

But then I hear it, as the train fades away; there is that voice again, spiteful and bitter. I can’t understand the words – what language is that? – but I understand the tone well enough. Teeth chattering with fear, I reverse away until my bare back is pressed hard against the plaster, cold and damp. I don’t want to make a sound, don’t want to risk revealing my position.

The voice spits and hisses and then I hear something else; a liquid sloshes at my feet, and I smell petrol. Heart racing, thoughts muddled, I start to really panic. My chest is tight and I’m finding it hard to breathe, and all I want is light; all I want is to be able to see the face in front of me and understand.

And then my wish is granted, as he lights a match. Then I can see him, as he lets it fall and the room is awash with flames. That face I know. I’m screaming, as he laughs. No door, no escape route but that tiny window.

My hands bleed as I strike the glass and break it, clearing the shards with my fists. My wrists are cut, and I’m watching myself bleed out, knowing that time is gone, seeing the red fade to black.