22 November, 2006

Home Alone 2

Since I’m home alone and missing Wifie so much, I can’t help thinking about how bad it would be if she had gone forever. How would I ever stand it?

I had a small taste of the nightmare about five years ago when, out of the blue, she had a stroke. She just felt a bit off one day, went up to bed early and found she couldn’t brush her teeth. Somehow, I realised immediately what it was and got her to the hospital just before she had a second and then, soon after, a third and massive one. It was a shock that such a thing could happen so suddenly and with no warning but the really bad thing was knowing, afterwards, how close I’d come to losing her.

This little sonnet came some while later and was published in The Love Blender, a great little online poetry magazine which all romantics should read regularly. I named the poem ‘Snap!’. You’ll see why.

“I’ve lost co-ordination in my hand.” And the
world becomes a darkening storm of grim purpose;
racing down spiteful roads; pushing through the blur of
slow people to reach the one in the uniform;
“I think my wife’s had a stroke.”
“I think my wife’s had a stroke.”As I sit and talk
to you, as I sit alone and gasping in fear
in the night, as your long recovery plays out
in tiny, heart-bursting finger movements, fewer
words mis-spoken, our bruised eyes reflect the horror
of what might have been. The handful of lucky breaks
and hasty choices that saved your life seem a too-
thin thread on which to hang all a man’s happiness.

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