rules for wraiths & other lost souls

no one knows you’re a ghost
your body they can’t see through
they wouldn’t believe it anyway
so there’s still stuff you hafta do

you gotta get up in the morning
get dressed, make the bed
put your smiley face on
quell the voices in your head

you gotta go to work
cause there’s always bills to pay
pretend to be a “normal” person
despite the grief that darkens each day

you must interact with people
though from society you’d rather retreat
& at certain times of day
you force yourself to eat

you’ve no need (or desire) for food
there’s no wish to dine or sup
cooking’s such a waste of time
when all you swallow comes back up

so you work & cook & clean
feed the fish & watch TV
& every show awakens guilt
from which you cannot flee

you’re a ghost of who you were
the old you has been erased
who is this crazy woman,
by memory constantly chased?

forward the time goes
marching through a winter gray
take it one step at a time
things just might turn out okay

copyright © 2018 KPM

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on Christmas Eve

On Christmas Eve I woke up at ten past nine. And I felt pretty good, considering the fact that the first thought I had when I awakened was “it’s Christmas Eve and my Mom is not here.”

I’ve been struggling in the run up to Christmas this year. It seems unfair…it feels wrong, that Christmas should just go on when Ma is not here to enjoy it. My Mom loved Christmas. The tree, the lights, the decorations. The Nat King Cole Christmas album. She loved it when I was a kid – even now I can see the look of joy on her face as she watched me and my brother and sisters open our presents – and she loved it even more once she’d become a grandmother and then a great-grandmother.

So I decorated my wee flat the way I’ve always done, putting the tree up the day after Thanksgiving. Adorning the fireplace mantle with the red and green tinsel garland, the dancing Santa, the Christmas Eeyore, the black singing angels and the lighted Christmas village my boyfriend John surprised me with two years ago.

I hung stockings for me and John and strung fairy lights over the tops of the bookcases; I even hung fairy lights on the palm tree in my bedroom. I found a place to display every Christmas card I received…they’re in the living room, the kitchen and my wee PC closet. In the act of decorating, I hoped to bring Mom’s spirit closer to me….I hoped that from her perch in heaven – reunited with my Dad at last – she would see all the decorations and smile.

This year, my first Christmas without my mother, I have received more cards and presents than I ever have in my life. And I get it: my friends, my work colleagues, knowing that this is going to be hard for me, have showered me with the next best thing to my Mom’s unconditional love: their love.

Thank you everybody, and Merry Christmas.

Merry Christmas, Ma. Love you….say hi to Daddy for me.

dream of me

I don’t know who said it
I don’t know if it’s true
that when you dream of someone
they’re also dreaming of you

tell me: do you dream of me,
the way I dream of you?
is love what connects us,
or am I simply feelin’ blue?

last night I dreamed of you
in darkness cold & long
I felt you clasp my hand
I smelled your scent so strong

I swear I heard your voice
whispering in my ear
did you know I needed you?
is that why I felt you near?

my thoughts these days are warped
images of death & desire
I sleepwalk through the days,
sub-conscious brain on fire

I wish I knew the reason
for these constant dreams of you
I hope you dream of me
tell me that you do

copyright © 2017 KPM

bramble boy

it’s early autumn
when he first comes
as seagulls fight
o’er cracker crumbs
her heart beats
like African drums
when she spies the bramble boy

autumn’s not
her favourite time of year
the days grow short
the skies are drear
yet she feels peace
seeing he is near
her steadfast bramble boy

leaves leap from trees
those we love die
the summer sun
deserts the sky
when the geese fly south
she wants to cry
‘til she sees the bramble boy

each September
in her garden appears
accompanied by the sound
of insectile cheers
he’ll spend the winter
quieting all her fears
her beloved bramble boy

copyright © 2017 KPM

every Thursday night

relieved to be home
where it’s warm & dry
she chains the door behind her
with a contented sigh

another workday’s passed
& she’s made it through
to another Thursday evening
with something special to do

once her cozy clothes
have been donned
she races to the kitchen
eager to crack on

hands all washed
knives assembled with care
cookbook propped open
new soup she must prepare

leeks she chops
boiling water for the stock
blender at the ready
ever mindful of the clock

the tasks she performs
are a private treasure
& she smiles as she stirs
imagining his face lit up with pleasure

copyright © 2017 KPM

autumn in the kingdom of Alba

another Friday morning
once again I open my eyes
to another spectacular
Scottish sunrise

my heart still beats
with its heavy load
yet I smile when I think
of strollin’ down Perth Road

my walk to work is soothing
daily exercise
checkin’ out the people
& the changin’ Dundee skies

a time for me to think
in the chilly mornin’ peace
a time for silent prayer
hopin’ sorrow will decrease

copyright © 2017 KPM

 

the colours of my silence

it’s comfortable
dusty black
like my favourite gardening shoes
slipped on
or kicked off
whenever I choose

shot through
with green
blades of grass from my garden
before
the winter wind
causes each blade to harden

highlights
of purple
lavender, Scottish heather
strong, hardy plants
withstanding
whatever

violent
red
that burns through the night
forever dancing
behind my eyes
when I squeeze them tight

copyright © 2017 KPM

 

interior designs

there are always has options
another road, a different way
if you shove fear out the door
you’ll triumph on another day

it’s not impossible:
the right decision can be made
but only if you’re willing
to step out of the shade

be brave & buoyant
as you stand in the sun
unafraid & unwavering
before anyone

make your own mark
design your own legacy
believe in yourself
embracing flight can set you free

copyright © 2017 KPM

 

smoky kisses

on days when life
leaves her a wreck
she remembers a cold
& rain-soaked deck
clasped hands put
reality in check
smoky kisses planted
against a lover’s neck

in his neck
is a throbbing vein
is that heartache –
his own private pain?
nothin’ to lose
& everything to gain
endless smoky kisses
in a cold summer rain

when guilt & regret
start to creep
when loneliness
prods her to weep
when thoughts grow
unbearably deep
the memory of smoky kisses
lulls her to sleep

copyright © 2017 KPM

conviction

the demons return
when the room is pitch-black
but she’s stronger now:
well-equipped to fight back
she’ll not let their negativity
win the day
her feet are firmly planted
her resolve will not sway

she’s made friends with Hypnos
she dances in her dreams
blithely side-steppin’
away from the demons’ screams
ogres & devils
do battle for her soul
as she recedes from the reach
of Charon’s barge pole

copyright © 2017 KPM