Lonnie Hicks

Freshman - 614 Points (www.lonniehicks.com / Chicago Ill)

Face Down On The Bureau - Poem by Lonnie Hicks

'This holiday season' she said, I will not cry into the pity towel
or prostrate myself on the ground floor of self-loathing and self-denial
I will not sink into hate-mongering and dagger-eyed revenge dreams
for these taint the soul and foul the spirit.

I’ll resist the demi-urge of vengeful retaliations
secretly committed slights and verbal cuts
aimed at you across the tabletops
of friends gravely nodding
offering sympathy.

I will roll up my heart-break carpet and put it away in my doily-topped bureau where your photo is turned face down beside my stack of lavender sachets and the box of turtles I had meant to give you before I found out
about her.

Bruised true but also elevated, yes elevated
not from the harm done but from my own new vision
as the kind of person who can summon
the souls spirit and see in my mirror a better person come
emerging from the shadows;
not smiling that would be an untruth,
but stronger, more resolute
who can see you as a turned page
in my book of you which now lies face down
beside those starched dollies of my regrets.

I see you anew, the betrayer yes
but more as a weaken spirit
who spurned the high fruit,
who took the low lying apple on the tree
and now wonders why it now has the taste of sour
in your mouth in the wake of her leaving
you.

I see Regrets' Pain in you
I see it tracing across your face
but I’m helpless to offer you solace or drink
from a well you yourself poisoned.

I offer you my empathy this holiday season
which finds you at my door
empathy for the vacantness I see which has darkened your soul
but more than this

for me, more than this, this is a bridge too far
because I am now just beyond my own
gnarled regret.”

He stood listening to her thinking there was something worse
than his betrayal and that was understanding
that acts and behavior
sometimes expose weak souls, his own,
betrayals throw the cloak of denial
over its own festerings and now alone
his soul felt unhealable.

She slowly closed the door
crying a tear of remorse surpassed
and he turned to leave
facing a vision
of his own dead
approaching past
feet feeling cold
from the crunching snow.


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Poem Submitted: Friday, December 16, 2011

Poem Edited: Saturday, December 17, 2011


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