By Trish Leake
Someone is wearing my clothes
Bought from the Charity Shop
Where I handed them to a plump smiling lady
Who thanked me profusely
Over black bin liner crackle
As I avoided her eyes.
They have folded and flapped around
My stick-insect legs far too long
I have shrunk, not them.
Someone is wearing my shoes
Nicely pointed toes of red
That made me glide, and wobble
When I stood still
Ankles slim, foot arched, blisters burning
High heels clicked on the ground with satisfaction
Demanding attention, announcing my arrival.
Now balance and comfort seduce.
Someone is wearing my smile
I have no need of it
People no longer smile at me
Only hushed voices, whispers, sympathy
“Can nothing be done?” they ask.
Their question makes me want to shout
“No, nothing … I’m being recycled!”
I’ve been writing for years, poetry and micro- fiction. I enjoy cutting to the least number of words. After a stroke at fifty years old I couldn’t work, so I decided it was time to take writing more seriously; it gives me a focus. I think we all have stories to tell, and I’m working on a book of short stories from my Irish family.
Two years ago, my friend Meg in NewZealand emailed me to say she had breast cancer. she was forty with a three-yr-old son. I was so shocked, I couldn’t lose her! She’s been through a ton of horrible treatments but she’s ok now.
These poems are for Meg and Connor.