Sentimental

These strange things that hold sentimental value,

Like my great grandmothers’ pocket watch,

It has one hand only to tell the time by,

It no longer winds or ticks and the silver case is badly tarnished,

Family jewellery engagement and eternity rings,

Gemstones missing,

The big old seashell my grandfather kept in the hallway,

That I used to hold up to my ear to hear the sea,

The old pencil sketches he made of his allotment,

Where we used to plant vegetable seeds together and watch them grow,

Kitsch ornaments that play musical tunes,

Old teddy bears, threadbare and stinking of age,

Knitted hand puppets made by my grandmother,

Stitches weak and unravelling,

A moth-eaten old Robert Burns Poetry book,

Dated 1896, with yellowed thin and fragile pages,

A rhinestone necklace that used to grace the youthful neck,

Of my grandmother when Clark Gable was her favourite actor,

The last time my grandad held my hand before he died,

Sometimes I can still feel his grip on my fingers,

I don’t think we ever truly let go, do we?

Hush

I need room,

My brain rattles my skull with white noise,

Basket case conversations, wastepaper words,

I’m tangled in a creative knot,

Trying to unravel, unwind,

My days used to have a beginning and an end,

Now I can’t recognise either,

The markers for awake and sleep keep shifting,

Weeks bleed into each other around here.

 

I’m tethered to this Wi-Fi lifeline seven long days a week,

It offers me life signs from cyberspace,

Where everyone has their finger on the pulse,

Checking they’re still alive,

It makes my head hurt, and destroys my vision,

Inward and outward,

Still, I’m hooked like a hungry fish,

The continues to be surprised at being reeled in,

Time and time again.

 

I need hush,

Shush,

Silence,

Nothing.

 

I need nothing at all; to inspire me,

Switch off, disconnect,

Breathe and reflect on nothing,

A deep concentration of nothing,

I drift out into a sea of nothingness,

Until I am nothing, going nowhere, thinking nothing,

Until something comes along out of the blue and stops me,

From drowning in the wonderful joy of absolutely nothing.

 

Something worth living for,

Something that reminds me I’m alive,

Something that makes me smile,

Something to unravel me.

 

Like those days when we laughed and danced,

Campfires and guitars,

Those nights when we talked till we lost track of time,

Like those years when everything filled our eyes with wonder,

Hopscotch and skipping ropes,

Ice-cream and bubble-gum,

Discos and celebrations,

Family, friends-

When the human touch meant something.

 

Shush,

Hush,

Silence,

Let me remember you.