I Am Care – A Poem by Linnet Macintyre w/ a painting by M.S. Evans

I Am Care

‘I have no choice  or  I have a choice but it is not a choice

I am part of a battalion of women

who march trance like into cross roads

while traffic is moving

creep into coal seams

sit by unmarked graves

sweep the dust

conceal the stains

in the river I sit naked

clear water laps my ankles

I pull my dress skirt up

cover my face

my voice is speechless

I drop one foot from concrete onto glass

I fall in a diagonal line

when I pick myself up

petals fall

the moon descends

as the last chorister sings

high notes scald the sky

my silk robe hangs

from my bleached frame

my pain is clutched in my fist

I measure out my frame

 in fingers and thumbs

I twist tissues into tourniquets

I tell myself lies

I drift under street lights

 in a golden dress

 arm pits open

hair hanging like closed curtains

I build castles for dreams I do not dream

I twist minarets from shells

but I do not hear the sea

I paint ceilings with stars

grow dark eyed pansies on the stairs

pale ghosts pass by

vast halls are hung with unsaid prayers

chandeliers drip amongst empty chairs

prostrate stockinged feet beseech

I ask for peace

when Pan pipes play

I feel the music

at the edge of a canyon I fall to my knees

the dry rocks of the quarry

are marked horizontally

as a tree grows from a woman

in a red dress

I see the sun set

joy passes as my battalion snakes

past a bucket of indifference

fingers clicking

fists trembling

temples throbbing

eyes closing

I am care and this is my choice

After Pina

Linnet Macintyre @LinnetMac is a mother, carer and writer currently studying a Masters in creative writing at Brunel University. She is interested in exploring the juxtaposition of mothering, care, isolation and alienation through the medium of poetry. Twitter: @LinnetMac

Banner: Pina’s Carnations, a painting by M.S. Evans. Tweets: M.S. Evans (@SeaNettleInk) / Twitter

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