You Are Here

You are here, at the cusp of adulthood, the key is in your hand for 21C Autumn Lodge.
He is there, teetering on the edge of maturity in an adult body, a coffee in hand, a dog by his side and the world on his tongue.
For the love category of the Christmas Competition 2017


7. Without Restraint


Without restraint

You tumble

Into life

Like Alice

Drunk on feeling.


But you get bored quickly,

Too bored

To put the tree up because it reminds you

When it used to be a

Family affair,

One where every person

Had a different side of the tree

To decorate to their tastes

With baubles and candy canes.


You take a trip down frozen lanes,

Trees leaning to drip drops onto

Your hat.

They are old women

And you feel the years creep onto your neck.


The library is your savour

With book pages instilled

Into the carpets,

And words of history

And imagination

Forming the bricks in the walls.

Your own books served a sacrifice during a great purge,

The hauls going to charity when they wouldn’t fit into boxes.

It felt like losing a shard of your shadow

Or a shard of your brain,

The lack of a book

Causing an idiot

To emerge out of a halfway there genius.


You take your time,

The seconds,


Thawing away under the library’s warmth.


Maybe this is a second home,

The forever kind of home

That wasn’t your first home.


You pick something about magic,

Something to uplift

The soul

And lift you away

With the dragons.


Then there is a familiar face at the desk,

Glasses perched on nose

That wasn’t there before.

You go from soldier

With two left feet

To dancer

With many feet,

Skilled and poised.


“Hey,” you say and the book

Pushes back onto the desk like

Only a book could.

“Hey,” he says

And the two left feet



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