in the hollow house
the drapes hang empty
and vases hold dust
where lilacs once were propped
by careful fingers
that chair
has always sat vacant
though the only two who knew
have gone somewhere on
the winds
have scattered weeds
into the garden
where she left rue
and forget-me-nots
at the time
without thinking of regret
or of forgetting
the clouds
have cast his shadow
from the corners
and the rains
have run her fleeting footprints
down the drive
past the evening songs
of the frogs in spring
she’d pass them
listening to the patterns
and plays of drops
on her umbrella
her mind a mass
of green and grey
the encroaching signs
of wandering
and winding wants that wakened
with the awakening earth
they grew so bright and rampant
alongside the buttercups
until her breath was tight
and pained her
and she could no longer
share her air
but there beneath the pine
above the brambles
and the sweet stars
that have long wound themselves
into the grasses
so long as he lies dreaming
she recalls the hollow house
with the crickets calling
beneath the porch
as home

© Sarah Whiteley


  1. This is one of your best and really, I’m surprised you’ve not received comments for it (apart from mine) yet!

    I love the way you paint a picture, it’s a story in itself – and so much of it is sensory, it’s tactile and auditory and I can see it.



    1. I think perhaps it’s because I originally published it as a private post – which I do if I’ve maybe had a little too much wine while writing. Safer that way, as I never know what will come out and would rather not have to smack myself on the forehead in the morning.



      1. That shouldn’t really make a difference once you make something public. But I know what you mean. I do all my posts first either as private ones or I do them as drafts (they will otherwise show up in feed readers!)



    1. I still am a little uncertain of the flow of a couple of lines, but I’m very pleased that you like this one… it is very much me and one of those experiences that help you to grow as a person, albeit somewhat painfully



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