Cenotaph

Winding his way between the cars, it comes as a surprise to find himself leaving the smoothness of the tar as he came upon the wet grass.

Tiny tears fall from the bent blades as he grazes past with each step.

Huddled underneath the bare branches of the Acacia trees an old bench weathers the passage of time, a lone sentinel.

Drawn to its dreariness he walks past the condemned boathouse, the smell of decay evidence to the rot of approaching death.

It takes little time for the wooden planks to leave ridges on his legs which remain hidden under his grey pants, as will the ridges on his heart.

A lament fills his ears,

two ducks circle,

announcing their arrival

they drop

to the surface of the lake.

Their bodies disturb the mirror-like calm as they splash and preen, breaking up the blackness in their motion, unaware of their intrusion.

His fingers trace the split that runs the length of the bench, a shard embedding itself under his nail.

Holding his finger up for examination,

the wrinkled hand seeming to mould into the ripples on the lake,

he wonders how it will feel,

returning to the earth.

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Author: Jo Bryant

I was born in the land of Banjo Paterson, gum trees, and weather extremes. I am a freelance writer. I live in the Bay of Plenty, New Zealand, but still like to claim my Australian heritage. I graduated with a Bachelor of Communications in 2008. I am writing my first novel. I love to write poetry, short stories, and also write for the web. And there is nothing that is on a par with a sunny summer's day spent at Waihi Beach.

6 thoughts on “Cenotaph”

  1. Hi —

    I do like this poem. I like the way you suggest that the man is curious, rather than afraid. And the way he is already merging back into nature (his hand moulding into the ripples of the lake). Really like the picture, too.

    Like

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