Hospital Visit


Sharp as a razor blade, detaching light 
And cutting shadows, shadows. But voices 
Do disturb and black strips of sadness blind 
Her. Or red lights stinging with passion and 

God bedevil her. Love was unnatural, 
A bitter compost with night flowers under 
Stinging winds. How could she know whether she 
Loved you? Her face a white explanation 

The garden in the sky was dull and violent 
For your visit. Moon walks crazily 
Over evening’s purple plants, hanging, 
Hanging. She has broken a bone in her mind. 

Will she love you? Hospital stands like 
Sickness, white silences bandage the mad. 
She will see you. She is come. Oh, my love. 
Says her mind is clear and follows the sun, 

Of despair. You say it does not matter. 
It does not matter but she must get well. 
The orchard of your heart withers and wilds. 
Please will you take her from the hospital? 

You cannot and you must not stay too long. 
She cries. You watch the tears like slow beetles 
Crawl on her cheeks. You love her. 
The garden in the sky without its moon. 


(First published in New Statesman)