Rue has a bitter scent by Ian C Smith

Picture a Metro station’s harsh stage lights.
She turns and walks away without a fight
or looking back at me, statue-still.
I feel my heart rush, our taut happiness
vanishing down the gusty tunnel’s throat.

I don’t throw away a cigarette that afternoon,
nor wear a trenchcoat with a snap-brim hat,
this isn’t an entertainment by Graham Greene,
just me acting egotistically,
my outburst not quite a public scene.

Throughout the ramifying silence since,
the calmness of books jostled by rowdy flashbacks
known only to me in my melancholic urge
to chase the shadows of tangled moments;
I yearn to re-enact that foolish strife.

In the pre-dawn hours we need a helpline to talk us
back up the long slide of years to the silly songs,
to those rumbling stations of the past where
we put things right, correct our bitter wrongs,
see faces we never saw again and don’t deserve to see.

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