I am the Groupie
I stalk Frink’s warrior – London, Liverpool,
Swindon, Chicago. He entices me into art galleries
and sculpture parks in the pouring rain.
I want to know the dreams that curl up in his bones,
the length of his longing, depth of his grief, how he doesn’t flinch
when the wind buffets his face. I’d like to know whether
he and I are alike just wrapped in different skin
and if he holds the same affection for me as I do for him
– questions that would have made my father flinch.
Whether he’s the pilot, the warrior, the Green Man, Midas
or the Risen Christ, I gaze on his face with the kind of reverie
that brings him to life. He doesn’t answer my questions,
but lets me glimpse his scars, speak loud
for generations of men, like my father,
who cloaked themselves in busyness and bluster,
unable to acknowledge their own slashed skin.
Veronica Aaronson lives in Devon. Her first collection Nothing About the Birds Is Ordinary This Morning (Indigo Dreams, 2018) has been put forward for the 2020 Laurel Prize. One of these poems was included in the Scottish Poetry Library’s anthology of Best Scottish Poems 2019. Her new collection Emily’s Mothers has just been published by Dempsey and Windle.