Through twenty long years
of widowhood Joan’s life
spread out around her sons
their wives and children,
neighbours, fellow senior
citizens in their gatherings.

Her brothers and sisters as
time went on all passed
away and were duly interred.

Yet the funerals continued
to Joan’s stunned shock
as her sons succumbed
to their father’s faulty heart
genes. They too passed away.

Her numb despair defeated
her grandchildren’s best efforts.
They could not lift her out
of her weighty misery.

Left behind by her husband
and children she withdrew
inside herself, speaking little
and her heartbeat faded away.


Joan And Fred

After WW II Fred came home
to Joan and their two young sons,
returned to his old prewar job.
In the late forties they camped
in summer holidays at a
beach well north of their
home city.  In the fifties
they bought a little section
above the beach to camp on.
Gradually Fred and the boys
built a little cottage room by
room then sold the caravan,
staying weekends in the cottage.

On retirement Joan wanted to
stay in their cheery little home
in  the friendly suburb with
families who had been her
family for over thirty years.
Fred was adamant they retire
to the cottage. In the end they
moved to the cottage at the
beach now joined to the city
by mushrooming new suburbs.

A year later a massive heart
attack took Fred from Joan’s life

leaving her alone in a new
suburb still feeling uprooted.
Her old home was now occupied,
another move was beyond her.

In her rage she walked the
streets, striding, fast, furious,
venting the anger and despair
erupting inside her, walking
until her rage burnt out

leaving her hollow inside.

Joan And Fred

Forks In The Road

Sue split up from mundane
college boyfriend Bruce at
nineteen, became excited by
her exuberant bond with Tom.
At twenty she asked Tom to marry
her but wanting to wait till he was
thirty he moved on to other women.

Fay enjoyed their sparkling time
asked Tom to marry her at
twenty three.  He turned her
down and she travelled alone
to Asia to spend Christmas
with her parents who ran a
profitable business there.

Soon terrorist bombings broke
out hitting global headlines,
stopping personal letters.
Frantic Tom visited her house
mates often to compare their
infrequent letters, to wonder
aloud how she was surviving.

Overjoyed at her safe return
they married at twenty four.

Devastated, alone, Sue told her
friends “Tom wasn’t ready for
marriage. I should have waited”
She married kind safe Bruce.

Fay and Tom had a few big
upheavals in their marriage
over the years. Were they
wondering … “What if ?”

Together Sue and Bruce attended
Fay and Ron’s twenty fifth anniversary
celebrations. did they all wonder
“What if …? What if that far off
terrorist conflagration had
never happened ……?”

Forks In The Road