I’m sorry. I never really knew you. Now
it’s too late, after all those years. The children
we produced have gone their way, rarely
looking over their shoulder. This sadness
is a large stone inside me; it is as if
I am becoming stone. There is difficulty
moving, eating, drinking, sleeping.
These acts belong to yesteryear – like you.
Can I please say, even though you do not hear,
that I relished your performance. You were
a star. No other man sat in the concert hall
but me, and I too often eyed the décor,
the architecture. Yet you were always
there for me, and I am grateful.
My pain comes from not fully expressing
my gratitude while I could. You are
enviably beyond discomfort now. I live
this moment for both of us, glad you no longer
suffer, remembering how it was and cannot
be again. I recall the colours
before the world became monochrome.
uncollected, © Paul Groves 2023, used by permission of the author