I’m not going in order while sharing the poems I wrote for the Facebook group, TSL in the month of April. Instead, I decided to share poems that got a good review from those who read them.
The prompt for the 18th day was “asleep but not oblivious of the unslept, unsleeping”- Adrienne Rich. Below was my take on the poem.
I Tap, tap, tap, on the tile floor Tick, tick, tick -on the wall, the air heavy, weighing down on me. The sound of breathing - not mine, but my husband's as he paces the room, opening the blinds a little to look out of the window, letting in a ray of sunlight. It's annoying when I'm sleeping 'Please wake up,' his voice sounds raspy, he holds my hands in his- his palms are sweaty, his face looks starved and his eyes, like saucers, his lips tender on my forehead. His breath warm on my face. A saline drip makes its way down his face and on my parched skin- I feel a tingling sensation. It's strangely satisfying watching him like this - my fortress crumbling before me, because of me. II The driver's at the school gates waiting to pick Adrian up. I wonder how we'll tell him. Not we. Just him. Not like this ofcourse. I'd like to be the one to tell him and assure him he's going to be fine. He's still young. He'll forget, if he's taken care of. Children are like that. Adults too. I wish they would not. I'm being selfish. A knock on the door- it's the nurse- a sweet girl in her twenties. We've became friends. The tip of her nose looks like Rudolph's and she looks frazzled. First time's always the most difficult- first love, first break-up, first delivery, first scratch on your new car. Then, it becomes easier. Oh, great! Mom and dad have arrived. Why can't he stop looking like he's been hit by a landslide? Dad's getting closer. I can tell from his footsteps. Mom's smiling. Why is she smiling? Isn't she supposed to be sad like the rest? IV Another knock. It's our Adrian. Darling, here. My little boy looks unsure. He doesn't come near. He's explaining to Adrian. Why can't he be louder? 'Mummy's asleep,' he says and takes him away. Wait! Where's mom and dad? They've left. The monitor's beeping, I hear breathing- mine and a flutter of a heartbeat- Where is everyone? He's back, Adrian's not with him. He's ripened in a night. 'You scared me there,' he says, 'They said you wouldn't wake up. But, I knew you were asleep but not oblivious to the unslept, unsleeping. I missed you. I love you.' I manage a veil of a smile. I nod my head, and close my eyes. I will ask him - why he wept so much then? Just not today- it's not every day you take a journey to the other side
I wrote this poem based on a book I had read a long time ago by Anita Moorjaani called, ‘Dying to be Me’. It’s based on the author’s near-death experience. The book was given to me as a farewell gift by a colleague on whom I had written a post, a long time ago.
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