Thursday, 24 December 2015

The voice so low and soft at my door

And on waking
find the voice 
so low and soft at my door
was not yours
for you sleep.

The message half heard,
understood as an undertone,
meant to hasten me across the floor,
to persuade me 'let them in',
yet leaving me unaware
of who they were.

I wake and listen,
straining for another word,
expecting clarity
in more whispered syllables.

None come,
there is no voice left at the edge of the room,
no foot disturbs the sleeping boards,
the door is only just ajar, no hand pushes it further.

I lie and wait and know
I am the only one awake
and still reach into the room
for the rest of the message.

Should I let them in?
Do they find it cold, unlovely,
a night of winds and sharp rain?
Should I rush down, feeling my way
until I touch the outer door
rattling in the storm?
Will they be leaning - sudden, beaten,
expectant - on the other side?

I lie and listen,
unwilling to move without knowing
then leave my bed to listen at the door
to the sound of everyone sleeping. 

© Amanda J Harrington 2015

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A story somewhere