You’re startled and offended now
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by tears that won’t stop flowing.
You’d cheerfully assumed that tears,
that weeping, woe and sorrow
Could be outgrown like dungarees,
like broken toys and scabby knees
Or at the latest,
calculus and cricket.
But grief, unasked in adulthood,
Roams now through your ribcage, howling.
Grief storms your spirit’s citadels
to pierce hearts and poison wells
on night after swollen, sodden night
ever howling, ever hungry.
Grief, like a wounded lion
bleeding lavishly across some blond savannah.
It savages new mornings' hopes,
tears throats from soft-eyed antelope,
Grief harbours no compassion
in the sea-roar
of its anguish.
And stubbornly bereaved
although the cause lost substance long since
(Wept into Rorschach,
into seven starving stomachs)
Your pain is faceless, frameless now
and yet as indigestible as ever.
No, grief is not outgrown,
is not parlayed, disarmed or conquered.
It feeds on your flesh now
And is not stilled
And does not sleep
And is not sated.