Shura

My flesh, my blood and your stem ill and bitter
Sink deep into your grave my little bold skinned flower
So small with your weak limbs heiress in your mother’s arms
You killed an angel you filthy exotic paranoid foreigner
With your orange silks, bangles at your wrists.
Known beloved, known neurotic will you ever be forgiven?
In death both of you will thrive at Ted Hughes’s bone-clinic
And you will whisper that war your majesty is a crime.
My dreamer, love poem, sonnet and my shell, my hell.
Death is a monster, a shell, while the sea is a ghost.
The air is beautiful isn’t it like a Paris soul, after a killing.

The combinations of water in a glass, the clarity of words,
A white meringue of a beautiful dress, is it mine, is it mine?
My stories are fragmentary, my poetry is terrible because
I say it is so it is so. My love for you is a blank thrill.
It is dying. Shame. But I have brought it upon myself you see.
I dislike my conversation. I’ve drilled it into myself. Gas.
This emptiness. Talent is my enemy. I wish to cry. You have left.
Regard me no more as lover. I will take the promises you made
To the grave. You will stand at the mouth of it, its purse.
Together Shura and I will rest in eternity. I will cling to her.
I do not need your soul. Our spirits are clouds, numb, celestial.

Everything, the earth is diminishing in front of my eyes.
People have become puppets. Winter has power over my mood.
There is no man on the moon. He has disappeared for good.
The angels have seen to that. Only a feminist remains. She is fair.
She is my gift to you, to Shura. No more harm will come to us now.
My mouth is frozen. My lips are blue with cold. My limbs, my limbs.
I cannot feel them. You chiselled them out of thin air of ghosts.
I am distancing myself more and more away from you. Evaporate.
Your father is responsible for this. I am off the edge. Leaning
Towards bleeding intelligently, rain is a feast and so is morals.
But you knew nothing of the latter brute, beast, traitor, and coward.

It hurts that you hurt me and that you hurt Shura too.
But what is pain my lotus flower? But sacrifices have to be made.
Why always the vulnerable, the wounded, the sick and troubled?
My beauty was accidental until glaciers came between us.
I wish I had destroyed you now, not romanced, and not seduced you.
Now I only have the capacity within me for spring, to swim.
Tel Aviv and Canada both distant memories I trained myself to grow wise.
The night is different now. I feel it all the time. Shura in my arms.
We are both prisoners. I can never make plans. She will never grow old.
Ted Hughes’s ugly duckling will never grow into a swan.
She, my Shura will never fall in love and whose fault is that.

Abigail George is a Pushcart Prize and Best of the Net nominated South African essayist, poet, short story writer, and novelist.

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