Adrift on the Ceiling

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BobBradshaw
Posts: 1814
Joined: 03 Jun 2016, 21:03

Adrift on the Ceiling

#1 Post by BobBradshaw » 17 Jul 2020, 03:35

v2:

Adrift on the Ceiling


I looked down
and saw my bloated face,
as if I’d been fished out
of the Gulf, my body on a hospital bed.

My former fiancée,
who had never returned
my opulent engagement ring
or the many expensive gifts
that I had bought her,
was searching my phone,
deleting naughty photos and texts.

Then she did the sweetest thing:
she crawled into bed with me,
laying her head on my chest.

Was it greedy to want
to live more? To resurrect
our relationship, which had died
months ago?

Was Marilyn repenting her glass of sherry
she had flung into my face
like a curse? Was it my fault
we had drifted apart?

I clung to this regret as if
it were a floating spar.

How could I get myself back,
to set things right?
Weightless I watched Marilyn sobbing,
my arms reaching for her,
and her turning her head
towards me, her eyes gazing
past me as if I wasn't there.

But she wasn’t thinking of me,
She was thinking of herself,
How I had betrayed her,
how her heart had at its core
an absence, a hole
she was damn set on filling.

I had wasted my life
not hers. That's when
she remembered her lunch
appointment, slipped
the strap of her purse
over her shoulder,
and strode out.

Through the window
I watched her walk
from the hospital, humming
a pop tune, today’s bedside visit
already forgotten.

Bumping along the ceiling
in an empty room,
I was dizzy, confused, the way
the drowned must feel
washing up against
a sea wall.

v1:
Adrift on the Ceiling


I looked down
and saw my bloated face,

as if I’d been fished out
of the Gulf, my body on a hospital bed.

My former fiancée,
who had never returned

my opulent engagement ring
or the many expensive gifts

that I had bought her,
was searching my phone,

deleting naughty photos and texts.
Then she did the sweetest thing:

she crawled into bed with me,
laying her head on my chest.

Was it greedy to want
to live more? To resurrect

our relationship, which had died
months ago? Was Marilyn

repenting her glass of sherry
she had flung into my face

like a curse? Was it my fault
we had drifted apart?

I clung to this regret as if
it were a floating spar.

How could I get myself back,
to set things right?

Weightless I watched Marilyn sobbing,
my arms reaching for her,

and her turning her head
towards me, her eyes gazing

past me as if I wasn't there.
But she wasn’t thinking of me,

She was thinking of herself,
How I had betrayed her,

how her heart had at its core
an absence, a hole

she was damn set on filling.
I had wasted my life

not hers. That's when
she remembered her lunch

appointment, slipped
the strap of her purse

over her shoulder,
and strode out--each stiletto heel

hitting the ground
like a knife in my chest--

the mall only a block away.
Through the window

I watched her walk out
of the hospital, humming

a pop tune, today’s bedside visit
already forgotten.

Bumping along the ceiling
in an empty room,

I was dizzy, confused, the way
the drowned must feel

washing up against
a sea wall.

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