November

A grey November light tells me
Something about death: it creeps
Through gaps. Grasping for throats
Tenderly. The cat breaches

The space between me and him,
Weaving ribbons of scent
On my face, ribbons that tie
To the smell of hair on a pillow.

A smell that ties me to you,
The same thick wavy-brown hair.
The same kind of smell and the
Same kind of light on you.

But you can’t see it, lying
In your tiny bed, with your
Nut-brown face against the wall.
These ribbons are strong, and so

Are my hands and eyes, and I wish
I could give you their strength to feel
Their soft touch and bright colours. How can
The ribbons be so weak they fall off

And I can’t keep them tied to your hands. Do your
Eyes soak in, but not see,
This deadly November light?
I’d give a thousand November days

August ones even – for you to feel
The cat’s warmth against your belly
To see your beautiful things and feel loved.
But death pulls them with such force.

Let the wars cease; no more remembrances
But for you, a dustman’s child
Child of the Downs. Watch this
Fade into the grey November light.

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