A POEM BY ELEANOR DICKENS
The thing is, nobody knows what to think about it.
They didn’t then
But it changes all the time.
Then, it was more about you. Which is why
I never cried.
I still haven’t cried.
Then it was understood, look, we regret it,
The situation is regrettable. But you know,
If you drink that much, if
You talk to somebody, go to their house, kiss them
(I mean come on, you kissed them!)
– Then you have to expect what they are expecting.
What did you expect when you went to the bathroom?
That they wouldn’t want to spread you on the tiles, push
Themselves inside you and say sweetly as you react to the intrusion,
‘shush, darling it’s ok’
Because it is ok.
It was ok.
You are ok.
And you did say; yes
It is ok.
So when you had a moment of lucidity – your face against a tiled wall
And there it was inside you, hurting, moving, thought like an island, disconnected
You understood – this isn’t what I wanted
And not what I want
But it is too late now.
After, maybe there were tears.
And then – well, years.
And in them a lot of forgetfulness. But nothing helpful.
Now they say – ‘I’m not asking for it’
‘just because I didn’t say no doesn’t mean I meant yes’
And on. And on.
But it is disconnected still, to that bathroom, that wall,
So what is it now?
The reason you’re so alone?
The reason you’re cold?
Or nothing, nowhere. All that is meant to be, is.
Get off the bandwagon.
Artwork © Maura McHugh