Face filled with history,
sixty odd years have passed in this house,
his mother’s table still by the wood stove,
just as it was when she was here.
The bakelite radio muttering indiscernible words,
monotone monologue of worlds at once
important and irrelevant.
Detritus and stains,
no one worried about the stains,
or the yellowed newspapers piled at one end,
tales from years past,
the spanner for the separator,
that old can opener
and a dirty spoon and dish,
tell-tales of forgotten soap,
the smells of kitchens past.
He shifts to spy the time,
the clock ticking his hours down.
The smoke stained paint
momentarily haunting his memory
of days when it was fresh and gleaming.
His mother died last year,
and his true love before that,
though, she never actually arrived,
she passed in his mind,
as so many things do.
Routine his only salvation,
to sit and keep watch,
a solitary sentinel,
just as she was.
©Paul Vincent Cannon