The Old Place



Ordinarily, the sun swerves the time across,

Slowly. A change of light may move the shadows.

Here, shadows turned the light:


The living room – in her absence, a strange epithet –

In which we filled in silent conversations

Like crossword blanks,


Where once she sat, she drew with a cigarette

The grey area: that my strength always lied

On the further side of frailness.


And from her, I only inherited cheekbones,

An empty decanter, and a tremendous

Love of weakness.