If you come to me

In the still of night
No money in your pocket
In howling winds and pouring rain
To a place with trees bare of leaves
And broken orange street lights
Shining light onto wet bitumen roads
A place with brutalist buildings and abandoned cars
Will you come to me?

Will you drive through muddy pot holes and leaking drains
Ignorant of your aches and pains
When desperate lovers past and current
Knock at your door
Or call your number
When young girls kneel at your feet
Whispering ‘I want you’
Will you still come to me?

‘Yes’, you say
‘Nothing would stop me’

And so you leave…

You set off in the middle of the night
Without bags or clothes
No hesitation
Only fixed determination

Face blank
Eyes fixed straight ahead
You get in the car
Staring at the rain droplets on the windscreen
You drive off

‘What if your car breaks down?’ I ask
And there’s no help in town
No reception on your phone
Will you keep going or
Turn around?

‘Nothing would keep me away,’ you promise

Driving through the night into the next day
Your car breaks down
You turn the ignition once, twice, three times
It doesn’t respond
You close the car door and start walking
Gusty autumn wind numbs your face
You pull the hoody over your forehead
Light up a cigarette and start walking

You walk
Not fast
Nor slow
Even paced

Black jeans stride one leg in front of the other
Through a field of fog on an abandoned football field
Stepping through fences and jumping over logs
Barbed wire snags your jeans
Blood drips down your leg
Not stopping
You see blood dripping from your leg

If you come to me
Like this
Through sleepless nights
In sickness and sore feet
In relentless rain and silent streets
At the darkest hour
Maybe then I will believe you

I hear a knock at my back door
Who can it be at this late hour?
There you stand
Under the glow of the full moon
Jeans hang low on your hips
Brown oak leaves in your hair
Scabs in the corner of your mouth
Scratches on your arms
Your white shirt soaked through
Exposing the curve of your breasts

You rip open your shirt
Rain drops fall over your nipples

All I can do is stare at your beauty
‘I didn’t believe you,’ I say.

If you come to me like this
Ready to bare your
Soul before me
Then and
Only then
Will I know
You only love me.

© Helen Stevens 21/02/2012 & v2 28/2/2012. Edited: 5/7/2018


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