When you leave poetry behind

When you leave poetry behind

hoping you’ll come back to it

at a better time,

when you think you’ll pick the muse

from the same corner of the table

where you’d gently dropped it,

you don’t think words could gain inertia,

you don’t think they would bump into each other like awkward exes,

you don’t think you’d have to grope for them

like a teenager fishing for compliments in a party.

When you leave poetry behind,

you imagine coming back to it

just where you’d left it,

like old friends catching up

after decades away.

(You know it’s never the same.)

When you leave poetry behind,

you think you’d never forget the skill,

like how you’d never forget to sing a favourite song,

like how you’d never forget to swim,

like how you’d never forget how make a cup of tea.

Of the three,

I’ve forgotten two,

and I don’t know if I learnt the third one right.

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