Poets' works to be included in WA anthology

Murray Bridge's Max and Jacqui Merckenschlager will each have a work included in the 2020 Poetry d'Amour compilation.

Two Murray Bridge poets, Max and Jacqui Merckenschlager, will each have a work included in WA Poets’ 2020 anthology Poetry d’Amour.

The anthology will showcase 96 previously unpublished poems on the theme of love.

The poets invited Murray Bridge News to share their work, below.

Her side of the bed

Like dust on a sill

life has settled around me 

since she’s gone.

Almost imperceptibly

personal items of hers 

have crept in, slow-wagging

silently curled at my feet

warmed my toes

slinked into my lap.

Old habits die hard

like placing her coffee cup beside mine

her breakfast cereal on the table

checking her morning email inbox.

But gradually, inexplicably

some things of hers 

have relabelled or morphed themselves

edged out old friends

become “his”.

Still, I cannot drink from her cup

or sleep on her side of the bed.

- Max Merckenschlager

Alone tonight

I stretch my arm across the hollow of your absence

a chasm opens up within my dreams

a dark void, a place I do not wish to go

awake now, I imagine you lying there listening

to the beep of monitors in a restless ward

and you so calm. You did not want to alarm me.

A cool breeze tickles a hair across my face

and I smile at the absurdity of your subterfuge

the lost time, the damage not undone by swift action

consoled by your acceptance of what is

you and I will go on chasing elusive butterflies

and gathering precious moments while life remains.

After several hours of sitting by your emergency ward bed

monitor watching, reading aloud tales of sailing 

by a British friend, my voice crumbled

and you, who could not till then hinge two words

picked up the book and read to me

the written word creating pathways for your tongue.

I listened to your voice but not your words

knowing that this was your message of love.

- Jacqui Merckenschlager

Photo: JP Valery/Unsplash.