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David Fraser: Two Poems

"This Tempest Will Not Give Me Leave" | Leaving Home

"This Tempest Will Not Give Me Leave"

     —King Lear (Act 111 Sc.4)

My aging dog and I
Are swept naked as we came
Into the storm,
The world spinning with disease for her,
Head tilted to the side,
Eyes quick flicking.
She staggers in the garden night,
Her raging heath.
I creep barefoot, guiding her,
My skin slick
With the pounding rain,
The air blue lightning,
Branches lashing at our skin.
We circle, all references gone,
Leashed together, her fear,
My sense of things that change,
Bodies that wear away.
My dripping hand
Lies upon her fur-soaked back,
Her eyes glazed,
Lost in the rage and blow,
The cracks of thunder dark and weird
In the last few hours of her night.
She gives her tail a shake,
Limbs wobbling, bumping into things.
We stumble back together
To our beds.

Leaving Home

For me you are still leaving home,
Wallet sitting on the table,
Dinner reservations made,
Things borrowed deliberately returned,
Keys dropped in the mail,
The war-amps tags attached.
You just walked out
Into a night I didn't know —
Black sky and stars,
Your leather jacket collar up —
Upon the bridge,
Wind catching you,
Dropping to the cold dark earth.

In dreams I meet you naked
In the mirror,
Catch glimpses of you
In a corridor before
You step through doors
And slip away.
The rooms are always cold,
Stainless steel,
Your face so young,
So sweet and full of laughter.
I feel that in another life
I could have been your lover,
Protected you from this.
Now I cry and gag
On clumps of combed out hair.

Poet's Biography:
photo of David Fraser When David Fraser is not working as an educator, he is either writing and researching or involved in alpine skiing, ski teaching as a full time professional ski instructor at Mt. Washington (BC), windsurfing, playing tennis, golfing, cycling, or hiking. He likes to garden and listen to the blues, and his new water garden has become a daily sanctuary. He lives among the flora and fauna of the British Columbia West Coast. David is the editor of Ascent Magazine, and the author of the book Going to the Well.

© 1999 - 2004, by the poets featured herein.