Hey you be David, I’ll be cigarettes.
No it’s on, not in.
It’s ain’t, not aint.
And back and forth,
taking turns with the paint brush,
strutting our wordy stuff,
to build a conversation,
neither one of us could have alone.
My one and only collaborator.
We let each other in for just a second,
but starved within an inch of our lives,
and lacking proper table manners,
we rushed in too quickly,
impaled through camouflaged clothes,
on badly hidden prickly
centres too late revealed,
inevitably drawing blood,
and tarnishing our deal.
Retreating to familiar ateliers,
to reupholster breached linings,
to repad them double-thick,
to resew tattered seams unpicked.
The shortest lived of double acts,
resolved not to let them in again.
Then out of the blue,
you reached out to me again.
I’ll never know how much you risked,
to make that scary tightrope trip,
and all you needed in return,
was a little recognition,
a faint reciprocation,
a half-met invitation,
a fool uncaging
an unwanted raven,
whose off-key squawks
were haunting the aviary.
But home-schooled in the economy of vendetta,
I pushed you away,
with a flourish,
like a cheap lacklustre wannabe hustler,
muscling in to grasp the low hanging fruit,
to shoot an honest messenger.
No honour in it.
And now you’re gone,
and now there’s no-one,
to reach out and touch today,
no collaborator to come out and play,
no one there to grab and say
and I’m still learning here.
J. Miller November 22, 1967 – July 10, 2017
Wherever you are, I hope you’re dancing girl.