She attends weekly, sits in the warm, quiet space,
unfolding herself to someone who started
off a stranger. Matter-of-fact, she’s long since parted
company with those bits of herself which hurt—can’t face
them, can’t even see them, so long have they gone
unrecognised. She explains, minimises, justifies;
she chastises herself; she hardly ever cries
and, when she does, apologises, shamed by what she’s done.
She doubts herself, tries to dodge her pain,
torn between quashing it and letting herself feel;
but, though shaken by the returning rush of the real,
she’s opening the sluice-gates. Over and again
she brings herself here. It’s long, hard work, healing a heart
so horror-torn. She has begun to grieve. It is a start.

Another of the holy sonnets.

First published in The Eildon Tree 32, April 2019.