Tag Archives: goodbye


Come in.

Lay your body down.

This place

it is

a refuge.



…with your armor up

…and your iron eyes

…and your stiffened lips

Unfurl your hair

let it avalanche down your steel shoulders

and flush cheek bone

and breast.


Come in.

Lay your body down.

This place

it is

a refuge.

Tell me your stories

Let your tongue tease out the learning

Your muscles ease out the burning

and your heart

so swollen

…let it leech out for awhile.


Give. me. your. lungs. warrior.

A baby would know what to do under such circumstances.

I am giving you permission to do the same.

Make your mournful sounds.

You have not forgotten how

only pretended.


Give. me. your. salt. warrior.

Your lacrimation will be a final desalination

Through pores

excrete what your body can no longer contain.

I will gather the delicate crystalline in my palms

and with index finger and thumb

we will use it to season

what. comes. next.


Come in.

Lay your body down.

Dear warrior

This place

it is

your refuge.



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In one month



She had been on her hands and knees you see
Cleaning the last of memories
with sugar soap.
There were dust laden skirting boards
where furniture had sat for a year
Scuff marks on walls
where shoes had been laid after a long day
A ring
around the bathtub
where he had found her on occasion in the evening
A sticky residue on the windowsill
where a plant had once been.

On her knees she’d been
Behind toilet bowls
Inside empty drawers
Around handles where once needing fingertips had sought savoys

She was on her knees you see when you called
cleaning the last of memories
with sugar soap.



Up you get.

Now is not the time for crying.
Time to get out of bed.
(Get up. Get up).
Do not rise only to fall back on your knees.
(Get up. Get up).
As you pack last minute things
Be careful not to fold yourself in between
(Close the boxes).
(Tie the bags).
When you come across a moment
Do not let it stop you in your tracks
(Keep moving).
(Lift the boxes).
When you shut the door
Let the momentum carry you to your next.
(Do not stop).
(Do not cry).
(Almost there).
(Do not cry).




She said,

‘You’ve turned yellow’.

Restless 2am, 3am, 4am’s

bring a souring.

Cuddles have curdled

the natural course of things, clotted.




There are ghosts in the house.

I count them:

Folded clothes, numerous.

Cereal boxes, 3.

Chocolate I’d never eat, ‘8 pieces’ times 4.

A plate unwashed, 1.

Piles of books, as many as you can indulge yourself to buy at a market.

A face washer, folded and drying, 1.

New soap, unused, 1.

a toothbrush no longer needing toothpaste, 1 (beside the 2nd one).

One side of the bed, unruffled, 1/2.

Your smell, …between hangers, in th ecarpet, your towel, infinity.

There are ghosts in the house.

I count them.



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If you’ve ever wondered about ‘goodbye’.

‘Farewell has a sweet sound of reluctance’. John Steinbeck.

How many times in one life do we say goodbye? Goodbye to a relationship, goodbye to a human-being, goodbye to a job; a place or a thought or way of being? Depending on the level of connection we have to any number of things we form attachments to, this one word can make or cripple us. Sometimes a combination of the two.

Saying goodbye to a habit for instance can be for one’s greater good, but a habit is characterised not just by a regular tendency, but a settled one. We become quite safe in our habits and so saying goodbye can also be painful.

One of my favorite quotes of all time comes from an episode of Madmen.

‘In ancient Greece, nostalgia literally meant ‘the pain from an old wound’, a twinge in your heart far more powerful than memory alone. It is a pain that takes us to a place where we ache to go again. Nostalgia (is not a) wheel but a carousel, letting us travel the way a child travels…Around & around & back home again, to a place we know we are loved’.

Sometimes, even long after we’ve said goodbye, we ‘ache’ to return to the moment we said hello. To the smells, tastes, touches …to the language, to the eyes you had for the world and the music that seemed to provide the perfect soundtrack. But I wonder if it’s not impossible to consider that goodbye is never final. That those eyes you had for the world will forever be changed and the language that you found at the time still finds its way into your every day dialogue.

I found myself only yesterday for instance, teaching a young child my ‘knee dance’, a dance that came about at a certain time when I was happy. A knee dance is in fact a happy dance.

The little boy was standing on the street, outside my favorite market holding, rather gleefully, an ice-cream. His father was having trouble prising the ice-cream from his grasp, which was rather hilarious as all he was trying to do was help his child unwrap it.

Believing very much in the joys talking to strangers can bring, I bent down to the child and commented on how happy he looked with his ice-cream, happy enough for a ‘knee dance’. As I said the words I was instantly transported by the carousel, saying hello to a someone, a time and a place.

Instead of quickly jumping off the ride however I taught this little stranger my dance and marveled at the laughter that erupted from all three of us as we danced quite peculiarly, quite publicly over an ice-cream.

Wonder.Meant …that for every time I have said a goodbye, I have also said a hello.

x Kate

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