It was the cold that finally did it;
drove me inside the wardrobe
where I curled up and closed off.
It was safe there, hemmed in
amongst the coloured wool sweaters,
the neatly pressed t-shirts and the flat
paper ghosts, hanging –
as if in suspense - with breath
baited, stagnated. Their air thick
and warm like syrup, sweet narcotic
cloying in my throat,
dragging me deep like a lullaby
to somewhere dull and safe
But outside, I can still hear you:
a ghost, roaming your own
card-plated home, clawing at the door -
You! Whatcha hiding in there for?
Get out here now – you can’t keep running
away forever, y'know! It's pathetic! (Or,
as the case may be, parenthetic –
just a pause to let me catch my [your]
breath) D'you think I can ignore
this? All your mumbling and
rocking and crying and lip-biting
tumbles as you trip, tongue-tied,
knock-kneed, to Narnia? You
(never could understand how I got lost
in every moment of mouths that opened
over my head, whilst you bore down,
god-sized, well-wintered) think this
is what life is all about,
do you? Being locked up
in that bird-brained-cage of yours,
trying to coax feathers from your spine?
Well it's about time
you grew up, (or even, grew in
to this mind, which still seems
too cavernous; a lonely throne
to fill) and picked yourself up
off that floor. You don’t need help,
just some sense (and sensitivity, but what’s
the difference?). You!
You ain’t nevernevernever
gonna amount to anything
anymore (except a lot of knots
of bones and nerves and intestines –
but, oh God, take them all! Which witch,
in which wrist, is this? Now she's in them,
they're full of flaws!) That's it;
let your head hang - it's all
you'll ever be good for.
Here, you pause, definitively.
Still not adjusted
to this brightness, my eyes are sore.
You always blocked the light
from my skyspace; my one glimmer
of hope. You, and your
cannibal imperatives, your sharp-clawed
verbs. You grip me like a noun, tight,
between two hangman’s hands. 'You'
is a mantra, sewn to my chest. You
are the curse
with which I am blessed.
fast heart! You'll gnaw
my innards, else I rest.
But, steel-lipped though you may be,
maybe I've learned
to steel myself too.
Curled quiet inside my make
shift escapist world; hugged close
in the whorl of a wardrobe,
I've learned to emulate the lion's roar.
* * *
This is the last of my old creative writing club draft re-writes, and I think this one turned out best (probably because it's changed the most! haha). Actually, this was originally in prose, but it only made up the first stanza, which has been almost exactly replicated here, just in poetic form.
Inspired by (hopefully, quite obviously) 'The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe' by C.S. Lewis and an amazing poem called Granma Crow. I wanted to work on my dialogues again, and getting the meanings/plots of my poems clearer to the reader. Hopefully I have succeeded - but you'll have to let me know what you think!