Day 44

The sunlight of recent weeks has been a boon, but these darker days are more in tune with the current mood. Are they reflective of it, or the cause of the recent shift in humour?

I realise that the lowering clouds, the loss of the greater space beyond, is matched by the thickening of leaves on the trees. Beautifully green and full as they are, for example, the hawthorn bowed with May blossom, the filling out of trees also narrows any available perspective.

When the rain comes, it comes hard and heavy. It is sharp on the window, almost a clattering, almost icy. In the lane loose stones, previously strung out in long trails by the occasional passing vehicle, are swept up and driven downhill. The dust coagulates into mud, collects at the bottom of the fast-formed puddles, is left in sticky heaps when the rainwater has drained.

A female blackbird, (a lively brown creature) lowers itself into the centre of a puddle and uses its wings to splash water droplets on its back, ducks forward and scoops up water onto the back of its head. When the burst of rain has passed the songs of blackbirds are the first heard. The rain is welcome.

April has passed in a blur of statistics and official announcements that announce no material change from the previous official announcements. The government graph does not describe some Swiss mountain to tunnel through to sunny uplands, as the Blonde Buffoon blusters, but represents a wave of accumulating lost lives. Each passing life sends out ripples that will eventually touch us all.

.

Christopher Perry

30th April, 2020

Faithful Friend

My pet? Ah, yes

Stolid, Black Labrador with still vibrant, clumsy tail
We’ve seen some things, eh?
We’ve stuck close
Through thick, thin, thinner and thinning hair
We saw off them off with love
My departing children
We stood at the door side-by-side
As they left
One after the other, after the other

Saw him off too
With pots and pans, my best coffee mug
And your dumb, playful barking
But that wasn’t a game
Old pal
You great huggable, soppy, beast

Do you even know
That when you tugged covers from my bed
Desperate for me to let you out
(When I would have willingly laid
To drown in my own brine
Or sleep forever)
You saved my life
Do you even care that
Our walks together
Under these huge skies
Kept me alive

Now you, heavy with age
Less steady on your feet
Often slide to sit
Then sprawl and lie
Where you just happen to be
Hallway, dining room, or lounge
I’ve found you
Panting like a steam train
Letting you rest, recover
Or helping you up, bending double to lift your fat rear
Then guide you to water, or the yard
(You have been so good about that
Mostly)

You struggle to move
Until this one starts cooking
Oh! And then you’ll find strength enough
Despite the aches and pains
To get off the floor
Waddle out to him
Limp after his every step
Stand by him
Sniff his knee, lick his feet
Look up at him with affection
Through those milky-blind eyes
For hours
For what?

A morsel picked from the pan
A rough cut of carrot, split tomato
Dropped on the floor
For you to snuffle around
With your great wet nose
To slaver and slobber it up
Off the dusty floor

Look at you
Doddery, drooling
Pathetic old BITCH
This is how you repay my love?
Those veterinary bills
I could ill afford?

You wait ’til when he’s gone
And, believe me, he’ll go
He won’t stay long
His kind never do
He’ll move on
And then you’ll find, frail fool
You were just another whose heart he played

But don’t worry, honey
I’m not broke
I have been saving up
I’ve enough for one last cheque
You’ll find out soon enough
What betrayal costs

My pet.

n.b. www.napowrimo.net Day 29: Prompt: pet.

CLP 29/04/2020

Misfortune

Football, a game for individuals with different talents who enjoy working together to achieve collective success.

.

On responding to her direct enquiry

Honestly, presuming her sincere interest

In what was a matter of the Soul

Not just the Heart

My very Existence

Her follow up shook me

“Unlucky” she said

As if this had been a card game

Or a football match

“Unlucky”

.

CLP 03/01/2020