Sunday, October 24, 2010

A Lump in the Throat: Carol Ann Duffy

"Some keep them in shoeboxes away from the light,

sore memories blinking as the lid lifts,

their own recklessnesses written all over them. My own...

Private jokes, no longer comprehended, pull their punchlines,

fall flat in the gaps between endearments. What

are you wearing?

Don't ever change.

They start with Darling; end in recriminations,

absence, sense of loss. Even now, the first's bud flowers

into trembling, the fingers trace each line and see

The future then. Always...Nobody burns them,

the Darling letters, stiff in their cardboard coffins.

Babykins...We all had strange names

which make us blush, as though we'd murdered

someone under an alias, long ago. I'll die

without you. Die. Once in a while, alone,

we take them out to read again, the heart thudding

like a spade on buried bones."

-Carol Ann Duffy, "The Darling Letters"

This one aches to read. But I know exactly what she means...

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