Poetry shift

SPRING | Helen Ferris shares a poem of how a fading relationship can shift your understanding of yourself.

Poetry

by Helen Ferris

We were young together
We knew what was expected of us when we were grown
We grew together

Cross legged in her garden
We would join daisies in chains 
I crowned her my Queen
Longed for us to be forever linked
like those delicate, breakable stems

We were fawned over then
Adored
No more
It is not right for girls (nearly women, the whispers said)
to be so close
to shun male company for each other’s embrace 

We grew apart

Yesterday,
back in that garden
she sat feet, maybe miles, away
Her parents separated by walls 
but too close

Just like that
the whispers were back
Aggressive hisses
interrupting the almost kisses
I silently begged them to stop
Leave us alone

She didn’t matter in the end
harsh as it sounds 
Time stopped for a while 
but I learned
that a heart emptied can be filled again
A spirit cracked can be fixed
A muscle torn will soon be stronger
will work harder 
if you let it  

My life was not about her
It was about me 
as well

It took years to hear
the fear in their voices
to learn what it really was

Were they jealous
Maybe
Of what I knew
How I felt
My very nature
unyielding, unapologetic

And there have been others 
But I miss her
what we were
The safety of my hand tangled
in her hair


Helen Ferris | @HelenFerris 
Helen is an actor and writer living in London