What is guilt? What is shame?
These feelings that we know and name,
But can not understand at all,
Why unto us they do befall.
Hardly can define them, or explain from whence they came
And yet we’re intimate like lovers, run to them, they know my name.
Images that flicker like a candle on a sill
But there is danger when a breeze blows on a night that seems so still.
A curtain casts a shadow on a wooden, aching floor,
In the wind it ripples, dancing; to twilight’s silent encore.
As if it breathed alongside, the tired musician where he lay,
Relaxing in a dream after a long and blissful day.
Bittersweet the melodies that he that night did play
I imagine them in abstract though there’s nothing I can say,
If I’m to write a eulogy, I’m so misplaced for all I see
As I mishear whatever songs, he sang for anyone but me,
The sign outside the burnt out windows, from the car I barely saw,
Just that now I would not have piano lessons anymore.
Where a flame’s tongue kissed a curtain,
Many fates became too certain.
I cried in my room for a man I did not know,
For the piano teacher who was his host then.
I scribbled in a diary for the people that I’d lost,
Tore the room I had to pieces with a cardinal cost,
I was in a lot of trouble but I really did not care
I was far too much absorbed in feeling, knowing that this world’s unfair,
Scribbling my nanny’s name, telling her she’s loved,
Hoping that she’s there with Lady, my first dog, somewhere above,
Questioning religion cause I’m raised to call to doubt,
All the spiritual, metaphysical, my parents would beat out-
Their laughter it was torture and it fucked me up no doubt,
Though I still prayed beside the bedside of my aunt who stayed devout.
I googled the Hail Mary and I chanted it and prayed,
And I’ve never meant it more I swear to God my soul was swayed,
But the thing that I remember most is when I bent to tell her
When everyone had left and clumsily I bashed into her.
“Sorry, sorry sorry, Pam” I bent down close to say,
(the guilt or shame that filled me is still with me to this day.)
“I just wanted to tell you that I took that time to pray.”
The conversations that we had, every single day
I hold them in me closely, because I know I can not stay,
In one place and with one face because I’ve had too many,
Can’t answer “how are you”, because whenever given any
Situation, it seems that there is a new me.
A different set of eyes and a new mind with which to view me,
Which makes it really difficult to know which part is real,
To know which parts of myself I should leave behind or feel.
But at least no matter who I am, which version I become,
I have you there with me, more of a best friend than a mum,
More of an angel than an auntie now, a pillar in my soul,
Each memory I have flicks by a memory unfolds,
A smile it spreads across my face inside but on the out,
I’m crying for outside it crosses, with the fact I’m here without
Your love, your heart, your food and most of all the chance to tell
You, all I’m doing, all I am and that you taught me well.
That I love you endlessly although I know you knew
That I would not be who I am if it were not for you.