Nearly thirty seven,
and there’s a chapped heart on my chest,
paint peeling off the red silk-screened t-shirt.
My toe is pink and swollen from a bee-sting,
no bee in sight, just a sting left on a carpet.
A deepening of my face.
Evening implies a quickening of the pulse.
Summer nights are beautiful, I’ve discovered,
now savouring the cool air,
as though it were sweet ice-cream.
A wet rag brushes away the day’s oily accumulation.
The carpet in the bedroom needs replacing,
the colour’s all wrong
and the kitchen needs updating.
And the heart, the chapped heart,
well, it’s harder to deal with that.
Scrape a few more flaky bits off,
see the still-good t-shirt appear from beneath.
I’ve had it for over ten years now,
it’s worn well, never lost its shape or colour,
only the heart, scraping off now, chapped,
indicates time’s passing.
(Published in Green Dragon 6)