Over 40 years
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Lorna Thorpe, from A Ghost in my House

Splinter

While you chopped tomatoes for a salad,
I was carving my initials on the underside
of your precious table, designed by her
and made of walnut, a wood so sensitive
the salt from one tear would stain
its delicate surface. Next I engraved a heart,
pierced by an arrow that linked my name
with yours, and finally, while you made
a vinegar dressing, I wrote a love story
so intricate my fingers bled from the splinters
that worked their way under my skin.
Now they're like war wounds, flaring up
on damp days; a needling reminder
of that stupid love song you sang the night
we stood half naked on your balcony,
laughing at the rain coursing our cheeks.