November 5th 2021

for Gran 


I visit the ward on Tuesday, in the city’s west,

autumn exploding on trees like muted rockets.

Read me your new poems? you ask with quiet zest.

I eye the too-loud telly, hands in my pockets.


I know I can’t dodge it, or what’s the point

of having written them anyway? I grab my phone

and thumb this scroll for something the right tone,

pausing on first lines randomly, out of joint.


We didn’t learn enough to justify…

Driving north, I feel like night…

Cancel every meeting with the sky…


Because the poem can’t decide for us,

I settle on this one, the first line of which goes

Hello. It’s been a while. It’s so lovely to see us.

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