My brother and I are submerged.
We have dived into the depths of novels
and lie low, there between the lines.
Daring only to emerge,
at one novel’s end
before burrowing into the next.
Stories shield us
from our own sad realities.
Words massage our jagged emotions,
allowing us to be immersed
in the sorrows of others’ lives
rather than face the fissures and fractures of our own.
The flotsam of our sister’s life
bobs around us in the becalmed seas
following the storm which was her death.
swim to the mind’s surface
Debris of our sibling lives
treasured relics amid our grief
Yet, only so much can we ignore or relinquish,
for when we read,
hidden between the covers,
with no hint in the blurb,
emerge characters perversely dying of their own cancers.
Their trauma is ours too.