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Still life

Second place iconHis room downstairs.
Her room upstairs.
Handed over at the lift,
he escorts her to entertainment,
sits on the sofa at the back,
arm around her neck
as in their Geaumont days.
Loving her stiff half-smile,
hint of serenity.
The way you look tonight
He sings along, taps
a rhythm on her shoulder,
knocking on her closed door.
Always looking for a way in
- photos, pets, poetry.
She used to be an artist;
wall to wall canvases
in a disposed-of-home.
In art therapy on Mondays,
she chews the paintbrush bristles,
slips pastels down her socks,
doesn't wave at her husband
framed in the doorway.

By Valerie Fry


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