pink rose wallpaper photo
pink rose wallpaper photo

 Bratislava, Slovakia; Summer 2015:

An artist, she kept her secrets in the locked cupboard under the eaves

her amorous dreams in a biscuit tin and her past in photo’s on the wall

lived in Old Town, Bratislava, a watchtower flat within a Gothic treasure

only wore black flapper dresses, favoured water opals and sapphires

neither old, nor young she could turn a head from a hundred paces


A scribbled address and a glass slipper quandary had bought him

to her door, the morning after, still loosely three sheets to the wind

a bunch of thieved pink roses, a grin of culpability, shaven eyebrows

even worse still down south, wearing only a dark blue, thankfully not

Guantanamo orange, jumpsuit, malodorous, unshaven and barefoot


“Er…look I’m sorry for all the trouble I put you through earlier…got you these flowers as a thank you” 

“Um… Little Carpathians” 

“Well it was on the cold side last night” 

“You make me laugh. No, I meant the gardens of Lesný Park at the foothills of the Little Carpathians…I’m guessing that’s where you ‘picked’ them” 

“Oh I see what you mean now…your English is spot on by the way and yes being potless as I am I couldn’t come empty handed after all you did for me” 

“Well thank you anyway. I studied at The Royal College of Art… lived in Highgate for three years yet was proficient in your mother tongue from schooldays…regardless how could I not rescue a young gentleman in distress, stark naked and tied to a lamppost. I take it you were on a stag night?”

“Certainly was…crikey if you hadn’t turned up walking that pooch of yours I’d be rotting in a police cell. I thought that copper was going to have a major pop at me and well, as for the crowd taking snaps on their mobiles…that’ll be going viral all over Twitter I’m guessing. How did you get the police off my back?” 

“Oh, I have my ways! Did you not get your clothes, possessions returned?” 

“Whole kit and caboodle in the Danube it seems, passport, wallet, trousers, jacket the lot…yet because of your kind intervention the Old Bill…police to you…they let me out…have to sort something out at The British Embassy so I can get back home” 

“Your friends?” 

“Some bloody friends after what they did! The hotel apparently gave them short shrift when they crawled in, a wasted waste of space the lot of them…bastards…excuse my French…will be stuffing their faces with egg and chips on the motorway services home and dry by now” 

“I take it you are the groom?” 

“Oh yes…well that is if she’ll still have me after this fiasco” 

“Tell you what…get yourself showered, your odour is distressing me somewhat and choose whatever clothes you want from that old mahogany wardrobe. My ex was about the same build as you and he is yet to empty it…I’m sure he won’t notice a few missing bits and pieces. After that I’ll go with you to the Embassy and help you sort your affairs”

“Wow that’s so kind…I only wish there was a way I could repay you”


Hertfordshire, England; Spring 2062:

A delightful if archetypical sun and showers birth of spring day

a silver haired Englishman, a widower of some years standing

sits in his landscaped garden, nosing through a new day’s Times

pauses a moment to watch Ms Sparrow see off a would be beau

his mind drifts back to Bratislava all those years now long gone

he grabs his walking cane, makes for his study, the painting on the wall

the one of him from forty-seven years ago, the one his Slovakian darling

presented him that day they both wed, the day he finally grew up

he sheds his now commonplace ‘everblue’ wreath of fresh tears

empty without her


37 thoughts on “EMPTY WITHOUT HER

  1. As the Beetles sang, “In the year 2525” ****. Bet we’ll never make it that long. Even the Beetles won’t be remembered that many years after. But tempus fugit, so who can really say.
    I just might like your story.

    1. I think the American duo Zager & Evans sang that one! I suspect in the English shires the world could end yet they’d still be in their gardens sipping Earl Grey tea and doing The Times crossword puzzle oblivious to it all!

      1. And I’ll still be sitting here, hook in hand, making yet another towel holder, or afghan, or something totally useless except for keeping me occupied. Must have been confused by the Yellow Submarines sailing thru the apartment last night while I was cooking with wine.

      1. True, yet revenge so glorious at the time is little more than sipping an ice cold beer in a bar alone with a smile upon one’s face…or does that make one as evil as the guilty. I shall live and die a fool.

  2. Love your romantic side, especially as it reminded me of Dad’s 54th wedding anniversary when he did the unthinkable, scaled the hospital walls with a hand picked bunch of mums favorite roses and left them by her bedside along with a love note.

  3. I wandered on wp and found myself reading your poem. It’s so moving that it almost brought tears to my eyes! I’m going to take the liberty to look around a bit…you’ve created a wonderful corner on the web! 🙂 Please do visit my blog for light hearted reads inspired by everyday moments! Cheers

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