Entry - MAG Poetry Prize 2011

I never left you

by Craig Raeside

I watched over you each night
softly sleeping in your little bed.
Dawn patrolling the vast emptiness
between your mother and my still beating heart.
The floor was hard, cold and honest
the door shut and set in its way.
The half-lit hallway a trap for a blind man
cornered by each family portrait.

I was caught in a minefield of love
and lost more than my limbs in escaping.
Yet the mirror has stalked me tirelessly
and what a terrible price we have paid.
So many reflections in the darkness,
such pain in the brightness of day.
We share in our own isolation
a false image that could not have been.

Today, you show me teenage disaffection
at life and the cards you are dealt.
I do my best to support you
and teach you the lessons I have yet to learn
When I speak it is with love and respect
for all we have shared together.
Remember my sweet that in life I never left you
and I hope you will never leave me.


Added: 15.04.2011

Judges' comments on this poem


I'm afraid cliched language gets in the way of the sentiment. Would suggest stripping back to bare bones and considering alt. word choices