Back Home, Close to Midsummer

I am now back in the UK from Myanmar, and have been enjoying the beautiful midsummer weather. There’s a lot that I haven’t yet written about Myanmar — and may yet write — and a great deal I could say about everything that has happened over the past few months. But for the time being, just to signal that I am home, and that I am alive and well, I’m posting this poem that I wrote a couple of days ago. It is slightly raw and unformed at the moment, but I hope you enjoy it.

The Things I Want to Tell You, Now You are Gone.

And the river goes on being beautiful;
and the blue-black damselflies go on
     making amorous knots over the water,

and the foxes go on slipping through the reeds;
and the kingfishers still flash —
     astonishing, miraculous — along the bankside;

and it is close to midsummer, and the days are hot,
and today I swam in the cold, brown water,
     where it felt good to lie on my back and watch the sky;

and when sun sets, the sadness knots hard in my chest,
and I lean into the shoulder of someone else, and I sob,
     because I miss you with a terrible ache.

And the river goes on being beautiful,
and the damselflies and foxes and kingfishers go on,
     and these are the things I want to tell you, now you are gone.

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