Elegy to my Mother


Louise M. Hart

Your body betrays you

It is a ghost of its former self

A crumpled hand

Caresses a toiled brow


Not long now

Not long now


But, you are a warrior

The bearer of two

You have watched men

Come and go


Infants and oafs, in skin

Thinner than the curve of your lips

Narrower and shallower lives

Than the hips that bore me well


Mother, I love you so


I am joyous in your presence

I laugh and cry in equal measures

In bursts of simultaneous ebbs and flows of emotion

That sooth and reveal how I feel about you


You fill my days with thoughts

Rich and deep

Invade my dreams

Whilst in the froes of sleep


Mother, you made me

So, now, I shall make you


In words that rhyme eternal, wondrous and true


On an absence of love…

I am too old for love
Worn out, like last year’s aged slippers
I lament the drunken nights I spent
Within the naked reach of pleasure

Beyond the call of the mistress of misery
Whose fragile waist I clasp
Fearful of descent beneath the bellow of her underskirts
I am secure in the certainty of my own solitude

Contemptuous of the art of living
Death wishes are, but my faux pleasure
I am too old for love
But young enough to die choking on my words

Like an emasculated poet