Two poems for Bill who died 3 October, 2015

Bill' 70thDriving to Bill’s

I drive, farm after farm.

As I round the corner on a ridge

The land below reveals itself, an open palm.

We live so far apart.

I gear down and steer along the life line.

I am getting closer to your heart.

*

All On The Same Road

Coming towards me: a campervan, a young couple,

The driver turning to smile at his girlfriend.

Then a shiny sedan, an old couple on their dream holiday,

Chins jutting forward like figureheads,

Anxious to be round the next corner.

And me holding up traffic, clutching the wheel

So tightly the insides of my elbows ache,

Driving slowly and feeling very alone,

Even though headlights pierce my mirror,

Pleading to pass.

You’ll have to wait, mate. I’m in no hurry to get back

From the hospital, not with Bill left there

Having jabs in his stomach and tubes up his nose,

Dumbed by the chuckles of nurses,

And too many people phoning.

I’ll just take this corner nice and slow,

Going back to a house with no lights on,

no opera playing,

No salvo of questions when I open the door.

*

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