Avalanche by John Tustin

I have tried to bury you

In a mountain of typed pages.

All of these pages,

The nightly tappity tap of the keyboard

As my mind goes backward to moments,

Sentences, a touch

Trapped always in the amber inside my skull.


This mountain, it keeps growing

And growing.

Sometimes, like last night,

I began to write about you,

The lines forming in my mind

As I lie in bed trying to sleep.

I pushed them out of my head

And tried to sleep and think about

Other things

But more words came.

Finally, I drifted off

To dream melancholy dreams of you.

I woke up without those words

But others keep replacing them.

It hurts inside

Like a physical pain

To not write it out.


I write a lot about boats

And bays

And being cast adrift on the ocean,

No lighthouse,

My rowboat oarless, my compass smashed.

You told me once about how after we were dead

You would drink coffee, sitting

In your second story

And look out upon the bay outside,

Imagining me, what I was doing,

Thinking, how I looked.

After being with you, that is what I love most:

You thinking about me.


These words keep piling up

But the mountain of pages

Do nothing to bury you;

You are not only underneath them

But within them and atop them.

I see you in nothing but your t-shirt

And panties, braless, wearing your long socks

And you are looking off impassively

On top of this mountain of words.

I feel you looking toward me

But when I try to meet your gaze

I see your eyes averted to nothing

But triviality.


A fake smile plastered on lips otherwise



One day, perhaps, the mountain

Will crumble.


But now. But now

The risk of an avalanche

Upon the remnants of my soul

Is the only immediate concern:

My burnt and damaged soul.

My heart is gone;

It sits upon that table

Where your hands grasp that cup of coffee

Or glass of wine

As you look out of your window

And contemplate your Honey Bear.

It beats still, but it no longer

Belongs to me.

My soul, it still lives a little bit,

Treading water with the mountain a shadow looming larger and larger

As the words blend and blur, sculpting higher and higher.

Just waiting for the avalanche

So I can be buried

And stop trying.

I’m so tired, you see.

So tired

Of treading water.


My death will be largely

Photo by Bernard Bertrand on Pexels.com

About the Poet:

John Tustin’s poetry has appeared in many disparate literary journals since 2009. fritzware.com/johntustinpoetry contains links to his published poetry online.


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