"Sorrows Place"

a poem by Richard Gildea, UK - poetry writer, author, poet

He understands, not just I alone; the need to go back, the need to go now
Darkness blankets the sky as I make my way out through the sandbagged wall
Crawling on the cold, dank ground, cat like in movement
Thoughts are hindered by the constraints of time

Straining every nerve to avoid detection; what foolishness is this?
Seeking out a familiar route, watching and listening for every sound, too numerous to separate
Leaving friendship behind with only hate up ahead
Spotlights draw me down to "Sorrows Place"

Pause to take in scene before me; clean up in progress
The urge to go forward could cost me my life
Patience may help save my soul; will they ever leave?
Emerging from the glare of lights, ethereal figures playing with the ball

Laughter fills the air once more, ringing loudly in my ears
For a fleeting moment all was well and then they were gone
Do not yield to urgency of thought
At last they depart, leaving me alone

The area has been marked by tape, a triangle, symbolic of life
Laying still inside the tape a feeling of desolation overwhelms me
Reflecting for a moment on a life so young cruelly taken
I feel the need for connection once more

Scratching at the grass and soil for remnants of the day
Searching out familiar shapes, the scent of horror still hangs in the air
I replay the scene inside my head, filling pockets with earth and spoil; terrified of possibilities
Do not delay; the time to leave is suddenly upon me

It is difficult to step outside the tape, to leave behind the place that haunts me still
I lift some words to a higher place; "Take him in your charge, away from Sorrows Place"
Reality kicks in once again, danger lurks in every movement
How can I justify this need to connect, risking all in pursuit of something not fully understood

The return to camp is exhausting to achieve, material and mental weight bear down.
At last safely behind the wall, I pause to draw breath for what seems the first time.
Suddenly realising the folly of my actions
Amazed that deep down inside there is another me I hardly recognise

I empty my pockets and sift through the contents, at first sight nothing of note
Then a flash of colour catches my eye, also a shape familiar to the touch
The connection is made but to what end
Far too many years have passed without conclusion........

Aramis /|\

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