Terry Collett

Gold Star - 23,291 Points (13/12/1947 / LONDON)

Ruby's Loss Of Child - Poem by Terry Collett

I tread on eggshells, says Ruby,
my life is the fearing of the heavy
steps, the trudging where others

fear not to tread; I see dangers
where some see none, where
the shadows become real, where

shades become demons, I am
the fearer of the bogeyman. I hear
laughter in the nightly dreams;

hear the sounds of baby's cry,
the empty cot, the vacant spot
where baby lay, the moonlight

on the chilling room. I see my baby
as it used to be, its mouth around
my dug, its lips on the teat sucking,

the sound of that is my aching wound,
the lance in my side, the hammering
nails. Nine months I carried the

precious gem, my womb the dwelling
place of my dearest love, the moment
of the birth my deepest joy, the echoes

of my happiness ring in my mind when
I'm sucked and drawn by the depressing
nights, the lowest ebb of the sea of loss.

The smallest coffin carried they said,
the men in black, the coffin white,
crowned with roses, the smell of death

covered by blooms, the kisses of my
lips on the coffin's lid, the sleeping
baby held within, the tiniest shroud

to hold her warm, to keep her safe
on her journey's way. They sang hymns
to my deepest loss, their voices like

pinpricks to my ears, the sounds seeping
in my skin, eating at my grief. In my dreams
my baby's safe and sound, in my dreaming

arms not underground, I hear the baby's
words, the chuckling laugh, the open eyes,
the sucking mouth, the first steps across

the floor, the first day at school. I carry my
loss like a heavy cross, my baby forever in
my thoughts, the vacant spaces where baby

was seems to hold her ghostly scent, her
shadowed presence is my mind's pretence,
my need for holds and kisses. Bring back

my baby; let me hold it once again, here
comes the night and the ever present pain.


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Poem Submitted: Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Poem Edited: Tuesday, February 5, 2013


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