Poetry

ORDINARY GRIEF

Ordinary grief is not for me
I am not haunted by any ghost
Handling the albums
In your wardrobe
Is like turning over curios

Strange relics like that
Length of your hair
Wrapped up in paper
Do not seem what I know them to be
Ordinary grief is not for me

Even before my betrayal
I was torn by the thought
That I did not feel the love that I ought
I could not overcome my deficiency
Ordinary grief is not for me

Ordinary grief is not for me
I wish the sob in my throat
Could be honestly wrought
And not the product of thought
I cannot ask for consolation

To grieve there must be a grasp to release
And the cut in our cord
Finally was so neat
That it was like news I’d already received
Ordinary grief is not for me

Thomas Hardy used to haunt
The hills and picnic spots
That he knew with his Emma
I wish that your absence could be fraught
With meaning

But there is no lingering aura
Your house is sleepy
And stunted and covered in dust
And even now I’m not really sorry
Ordinary grief is not for me

I thought I could live with you
When you were gone
More and less than mother and son
But now it seems that you
Won’t live with me

Ordinary grief is not for me
Is this all I’m given to feel
This thin remorse
This sense that things were
Not as they should be

Our final interview
When I perched
On the lip of a chair
Uttering pleasantries
Ordinary grief is not for me