Forget Me, Not

Forget Me, Not

She is not wearing a little red coat –
appearing, vanishing spectre-like in
a watercolour landscape. No, she is
just ahead of us in the field wearing

clothes I do not remember, lengthening
light brown hair, a toddler flanked by parents
younger than us, and-still-in-love. She runs
in halting, wobbling bursts; shrieks that ear-ache

shriek of all young children, teeters on the
brink of falling and suddenly…. Sits, legs
collapsing, giggling; a tiny hand in
Mummy’s right and Daddy’s left return her

to mobility. They are happy; of
us – oblivious. You have sensed words
we do not speak, burdens we do not carry,
pain we do not feel. “She could be with us.”

All we had wanted, loving empathy.
We could not bring her to bear, as if birth
were a truth we could not hear. Nature told
us her soul will recede from sight, like space.

Heart beating on your belly’s ultrasound;
a form taking shape before our eyes had
time to recognise – neither clay, nor words
nor paint, but flesh, our DNA. There is

no taxonomy of loss, only blanks…..
where words might have been in passing this frail
blue flower with yellow star, with leaves like
mouse’s ear, that clings, holding on….Each blue

head, delicate, a name for loss; child and
flower, whispering as we turn and wish,
this blue’s  palpable touch of remembrance:
forget me, forget me, forget me, not.


Giles H. Sutherland
July 2011

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