Travel Companion

The journey’s end and returning to the start
aduly child, visit to the parent of past
the mother, the future dependent
every mile, regressing a voyage of repression.

A doo opens to reawaken
memories in nostalgia sodden air
odours of childhoo, reminders of youth 
and what’s best for you love.

The greeting as always warm
a kiss, the subtle jibe
hidden in sibling praise
and the lengthy health report.

Old rituals are repeated
Mass attended, for her sake
no mention of lover,
he would be, turned in his grave.

Nerves getting rawer
tongue tender from biting
Not too soon, time to leave,
guilt whispering, the travel companion.

-Ciaran Burke


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