It was an unexpected outcome of a short break in North Wales and as I sat in a chair next to his bed, through the early hours of the morning after the night before with a range of monitors beeping and an oxygen mask hissing, I reflected on the fact that three years before we had been in another hospital following a road traffic accident. Why there should be such unpleasant symmetry to this particular time of the year, I have no idea? I can draw comfort from the fact that we survived, and we know we can recover. After all we’ve done it before!
My own heart reflected on the 24 hours that followed.
I could have been left alone in this world
Clothes in the wardrobe
Shoes by the door
Your glasses in haste, strewn on the floor.
Unasked questions sitting in rows
Waiting with no one there to pose.
Plans from the evening hang, like balloons, in the air.
Yet, a hole in my heart, raw and laid bare.
Shaved chest hairs on white bed linen.
Plastic covers from sensor pads on the floor.
Unused painkillers on a mat by the bed.
Your toothbrush loaded and ready from the night before.
Last night, we stood and watched kayakers dance in the wild, froth river.
Today, on the bridge alone I shiver.
This energetic stream now restrained.
Its arteries of life constrained.