poetry, trails of thought

Hurting from the start [how I wronged the people I most loved]


I was wrong from the start and that’s why we parted.

I phoned her awfully one day, and this is why I do not phone any more.

And that day we talked about being together.

And we talked that day about how we’d be together.

And I needed for me, not her, to be together in a way that would

mean together like something I’d never done together before.

And she said she had something important to say.

And when she said that important thing she had to say to me, I loved her

so much that I really didn’t mind what she had in mind to say – or indeed

went ahead and said.

And I really did love her, that is truly a fact, but I expressed my love poorly,

and if I had not, we would have spent the past decade still seeing

each other and loving, and fascinating the drawings and thoughts she would

gloriously have, and liking the words and the turns of phrase I’d churn out

with my ham-fisted joy.

But what really went wrong, went wrong at the start.  For I convinced her

in that phonecall, that awful call of foolish nature, to

love me in a way she did not want to love me at all: simply the love that

broaches body and shares almost everything that anyone can


about a person and a being and a wondrous soul.

And although she was adult and older than me, in reality I was stronger

and angrier than her, and I spent that awful phonecall convincing her

and making her and crying her and bewildering her and advantaging

her, and doing all these things I have spent a

decade – and more – utterly ashamed for.  And doing all these things

I can never go back to.  And doing all these things

I should forever hang my head in shame.  And the shame was not

hers but mine.  And the rhyme which vanished from the life I treasured

was the rhyme which vanished from my life forever.

And there are no words I now know to replace the pain of that

time: in my mind; in hers; in those who knew then – and in those

who now know, because

I’m telling you so.


The strongest person you ever do meet is never the one you should

gladly take advantage of.


So if we are no longer together, the blame is all mine.  And if you

ever read these words, and if you ever remember those words,

and if you ever can forgive me both these things, then

do ring the changes on your life; do settle yourself finally down

to knowing it was me who went and did this terrible

thing of taking advantage of a woman of love, and hurting you

like I went and did, my love; and that’s how I deserved exactly

everything I lost.



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