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Rosemund Handler

@ Sunday Times Books LIVE

Not free to go

Your exhausted organs
wheeze nothing but betrayal
at the door a cheerful voice
doesn’t cheer
props shards of bone
that dent the pillows
poke through flaps of skin
like used envelopes that won’t stick
there is no listening
in the courthouse of the brain
though you plead for release from
the prosecutorial flicker
that jams you in impasse

daily you compose your obituary
each word a butterfly
sipping the nectar
of old dreams
even as your bones capitulate
and toss you where you lie
watching yourself inhale
the puddle of incontinence
the better-off-dead distaste
in stentorian tones
hard efficient nails that
barely graze the dim years
ninety-seven of them

and not free to go
yet

For Audrey Blignaut, who died in October 2008

*

This poem originally appeared on LitNet

 

Recent comments:

  • <a href="http://rosemundhandler.book.co.za" rel="nofollow">Rosemund</a>
    Rosemund
    October 7th, 2008 @15:24 #
     
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    reading Dina's Book, by Norwegian writer Herborg Wassmo

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