Survival

A poem by Lynne Knight from her collection, ‘The Persistence of Longing‘ (Terrapin Books, 2016):

 

SURVIVAL

We broke things. Glasses, a lead crystal vase,
the ceramic chicken painted à la portuguaise.

It was the longest, hardest winter in a decade.
Snow against the windows, sealing us inside.

I liked that part of it, sitting by the fire with a book
until the lines began to blur and smear to black,

like black behind a dream you know you’ll wake from.
I liked waking there alone, the chair a solid frame

I sat inside like a portrait, pretending to be a portrait
when he came by, holding my breath, eyes staring straight

beyond him. Your mother’s disappeared again,
he’d call to my daughter, who’d come near, feign

a search for me. Some people need to escape,
she’d say, and wave her hand, and turn away

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