It’s the last day of Poem-mas, and I’m writing this post a little hurriedly — I didn’t quite allow for how busy I’d be on Christmas Eve, what with the last-minute present buying, family arriving, and general disorganisation. Also naps. So it might be a bit shorter than the others, but I guess that’s probably not a bad thing.
This poem doesn’t come from any of my published collections. I wrote it in August this year and while its subject manner is somewhat more light-hearted than a lot of the others, it’s not out of keeping with my usual styles of writing. I wrote it when my Kindle, which had served me faithfully since 2011, though not as much as it could have done, abruptly died, just when I’d started using it again.
It isn’t the first time I’ve written a poem about an inanimate object — I’ve got one somewhere that I wrote in 2013 when I misplaced my flute and piccolo. That time I drew on the names I gave to my instruments for inspiration. I name pretty much everything I own, and that particular flute is called Gabriel, while the piccolo has the slightly dubious name of Sleipnir. (Dubious simply because I can’t see how a piccolo resembles an eight-legged horse.)
My old Kindle was called Bronwyn, one of the few things I owned that I named after one of my own characters. Ah, Bronwyn. The first queer character I ever created, and it was an accident. I remember how difficult I found her to write — sometimes I wonder if my queerness isn’t a side effect of getting so far inside her head I found it hard to leave! Bronwyn, alas, has now shuffled off this mortal coil forever, and was replaced by Fearghall (also named after one of my own characters, and from the same series).
But I decided she’d served me too faithfully not to be immortalised in words, and also I was really stuck for things to write about, so I wrote a poem to commemorate her. And that’s what I’m sharing today. Because I figured Christmas Eve, contrary to the beliefs of the BBC, is not the time for emotional and heartbreaking things.
(It’s possible I am still not over the Merlin finale.)
(I am definitely not over the Merlin finale.)
— — —
Eulogy For Bronwyn
A betrayal by my Kindle’s screen.
It mimics grey lines to assuage me,
to convince me of stories unreadable
beneath a crooked faultline
lurching across its middle.
No stories here; relegated to paper,
I pull the plastic covers off library books
to see their wings naked and bright,
marvel at the colour of the title
in blue and gold and black.
A dozen stories linger unfinished
under the broken screen,
and wait for its replacement.
— — —
For those of you who celebrate Christmas, I wish you a very merry one with minimal arguments and maximum fun. I hope you have great food, company, and presents! And for those of you who don’t, I wish you a good few days anyway. Hopefully you get a break from work or school and can take some time out to enjoy yourself.
I’ll probably be back to blogging shortly after Christmas, but I’ll be gone for a few days at least, so fare thee well! I hope you’ve enjoyed these poems. Remember you can find links to all my collections on the Books page, and I’m always delighted to hear your thoughts too.
Happy Christmas <3