The intricacy of a body in the dark
These are the days of the clouds
and colours of his childhood,
of the secrets of forgotten garages
with unwilling doors
and small-paned windows,
of the mysteries of broken glass, rust
and enigmas of dust,
And of the sides of houses too,
of shadows leopard-crawling over mossed brick,
and cool green thoughts and concrete
crumbling to nothingness at the edge
of tired swimming pools
spun with holiday light.
The intricacy of a body in the dark,
how it reminds him of a life
lived a lifetime away, where memory
tastes of salted skin
after a day at a beach,
part sunlight, part ocean,
and at the tip of its tongue
the bitterness of its end.
He stands, looking out at the waves
and last scraps of surfers,
imagining someone else watching him
flared against sky leaking into cobalt.
He has been turning
a perfectly good key in a lock
over and over his whole life
but the door remains locked.
He imagines she stands behind the door
brushing the years between them from her hair.
Now everything is silent and made of first light,
except for the sound of that key turning helplessly
and the distant keening of gulls.
— Stephen Symons