She will brave the world
wearing your badges of honour
with an air of proud resignation.
She will hope against all hope
that her day will seem brighter
through concealer and dark glasses.
In an unblemished shop window
your smudged caress on her cheek
and the bracelet from your embrace
will be superimposed
over perfect mannequins –
their smiles arrested beneath
flawless skin and glassy eyes.
She will nod at them
(mute in their mutual humiliation)
and watch transfixed
as the window dresser manhandles them
into beautiful submission.
Up and away
some of us will always
our breath caught and held
to glance at a cloud
a wistful wisp of smoke
a lazy hot-air balloon
mesmerised by the mechanics
the defiance of physics required
we will always be the ones
quietly contemplating man’s first dream
saluting those who dare to conquer
Gravity’s devastating grip