Wednesday, 30 September 2015

A few lines about not waking up in the night

I woke up screaming
She said
And only afterwards we found
It was the very moment 
That his plane went down
That her car went off the bridge
That the bomb exploded killing ‘many’
I knew the moment she had died
Though I was miles away
She said
Recounting how she felt 
Of tele-empathy
There is no explanation
You just feel it in your heart
She said. 

It was Boxing Day ten years ago
And I just couldn't get to sleep
He said
God knows I’d had enough
To drink
That day
That’s all there is to do
And telly
But I could not get off
Next day I heard it
A quarter of a million died 
No wonder I was troubled in my bed. 

The real surprise to me
Is feeling nothing
My daughter’s crash
My uncle’s death
A killer quake
I need the the News
The breath-stop phone call in the night
Isis beheadings
A plane gone down
A church burnt out
Its people raped and dead
The layered bodies 
Crushed and broken in the hajj 
I feel no great disturbance in the force
I don’t wake screaming
There is no involuntary shudder
I sleep

In all this bulging
screaming planet
Occasional synchronicity 
Is to be expected
One coin flips heads 
a thousand times
One mother wakes
At just the hour
Her boy’s head hits the wall
It is
The law of averages 
After all
But most of us
Most of us
Most of the time
Feel nothing
At all


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