I listen for
the creak of panic in his lungs
as he leans on pedals to confront
I know his days on bikes are slowing
the cycle chain ticks off the miles.
Trees and fields and lanes slip by.
I clutch my sheaf of flowers tight
knowing the house will stifle them.
He sits by open kitchen door,
gasping like a landed carp.
There’s nothing I can do except
brew up the way he likes, put away
First published in The Way We Came (Bluechrome 2007)