Neil Coppen

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Absence makes the vine grow longer

January4

You left me with…

1.) A green piggy bank (in the shape of an elephant). Loot from one of your car-boot sale trawls.  A relic from some Afrikaans bank promotion in the 70’s.

2.) A fridge full of inedible leaves. Watercress wasted on me—my resourcefulness with salad stuff extends to boiled eggs and iceberg lettuce- what does one do with watercress?

3.)A wobbly vintage bed side lamp, fond of conking me on the head during late night reading sessions.

4.)An ID photo, carefully placed amongst our shelf of Chinese wind-up toys, solemn eyes to keep a tin army in check.

5.) A Jasmine vine on the balcony which, in the absence of your patient fingers, now competes with fellow tendrils to topple the TV Ariel and strangle me in my sleep.

6.)A sculpture you made in second year: A concrete cast of your upturned hands, left outside to cup the evening rain.

Each morning I wake and empty two generous palms-full.

posted under commentry, poetry

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