Saw you again
over the wine and canapés,
and it was as though you
were dead to me all over again.
Your shining eyes were locked
with some other bloke’s and I
thought, ‘Shite, not again.’
Except there is no again,
and it’s my well-crafted lie
to believe that you were alive
to me. Then you came over and said ‘Hi’;
I echoed the same, lamely,
and you said how glad you were that I survived.
The only thing that survived
was that thing we’d told ourselves
about romance and ‘being together’.
I gather, that was your amusing fabrication,
and I keep that burning thought alive
like a mangy moose’s head over a fireplace,
Yes, you, the one who didn’t
partake in all the bullshit everyone else did.
Such a good story that I began to live it
too. Our history, except not yours at all,
and who’s laughing now? You are, as you were,
into his mouth and out my door.
Wasn’t it fine? But your most impressive
accomplishment was to remain alive. Not to
say part of me died. It was too late to turn the tide.
I no longer seemed able to choose what I
ought to believe - and isn’t it nice to know
I’m the one who ditched the bride?
And now we sit down and you smile,
and something changes within me. Because,
then, that fantasy almost springs to life,
then smoulders, sputters and collapses in smoke.
Once burned, twice wise, is what I should have surmised.
You say, ‘Isn’t it nice?’ and I don’t reply,
wondering if I have emerged alive