Forgive me

The E flat on your baby grand (not quite in tune). This same finger
in the crack that goes clean through the bungalow’s supporting wall.
Then flicking dust from the fringed edge of your floral lampshade.

Noticing that they are all white, these doll-saints you’ve painted
How they stare down from their frames, wide-eyed, entitled. And the orange
volcano spewing fire against an orange sky. What’s that about?

Pulling down that curtain of cobweb (though the joke was on me when it stuck
to my new wool coat). Wondering why the kitchen is stacked with egg trays.
Did you live on eggs? Or find some other use for them?

Ridiculing the antique vacuum cleaner, heroic amongst half packed boxes.
Coveting your collection of chanson and modern jazz. Did you know vinyl
had come back? Did you still listen to them? Did you dance?

Peering through the glass of the display cabinet. A hoard of plastic bags
and a decade’s worth of vitamin pills, unopened. Recoiling from the bathroom
tiled ceiling to floor in flesh pink freckled with black mould.

Lingering in your tiny bedroom.  A womb lined with shelves of books
in five languages. The crumpled bedding, cerulean blue, fills the room.
An ethereal pool. Was it here? Did you dive down and through?

Forgive me.



Bel  Wallace is a carer who would rather be out walking. She started writing in earnest after walking 560 miles of a pilgrim route to Santiago de Compostela, has been short-listed for the Bridport Poetry Prize and widely published over the last year, with one poem nominated for the Pushcart Prize. Instagram @belwallace_writer