Doggerel Dave

It's over then?

   GOODBYE

 

London. Small well furnished flat. Man and woman seated at table on which are the remains of a meticulously prepared meal – only partially eaten.

 

Man speaks after a long silence.

 

M – Well, I suppose I’d better go.

W – I think so.

M – It needn’t end like this, you know.

W – I know, but this is the only way it can be.

M – You could still come with me.

W – Look, we’ve been over and over this for the past year – for the last three months we’ve talked about little else.

M – Well that’s because you can’t see my side of it.

W –I do, I do. You want me to go with you. To a place where you have family, friends, speak the language – yes, I know it’s still English, but it’s not the same….

M – Oh come on, you’ve been there, you enjoyed the holiday, liked my family.

W – Yes, I know – even liked some of your friends – not Liz, I admit (and it wasn’t jealousy about your mutual past, either). The point is, I wouldn’t be able to find work in my field and none of your friends would be mine.

M – Well what’s  the matter with that? They’d accept you and become ours with time.

W – Quite apart from anything else, friendship’s more than just acceptance (which incidentally most of your friends do very well) – it’s about a shared history, experiences at different life stages, understandings beyond words.

M – There’s other things…

W – Such as? The weather? And what else? I live in the centre here – access to life, galleries, theatre. There all we could afford would be some grotty suburb with the height of excitement a trip to the local glitzy shopping mall.

 

PAUSE

 

M –You know, a couple of years ago I’d have said I’d found my life after so long alone – the woman I wanted to settle down, have kids with.

W –Oh not again! I always made it clear. You know I’ve left my run too late – and I’m not going to sign up for all that technology…… look, please go – I wanted this to be a wonderful last evening, no bitterness – in memory of all the good times we’ve had - and now we’re just repeating the same old arguments…

 

M – I’m sorry – it’s all too painful…

        Alright, I need to get up, walk through that door, let myself out and not turn round….

        I need to do it ……now…..’Bye

W – ‘Bye.

 

                                                                                                                      

 Hope springs eternal…

 

‘Hope springs eternal in the human breast.’

Well said Mr. Pope – but what of the rest?              

Both of our hearts had given of their best,

But time moved on and we had failed the test.

 

I lived in London where we met and loved;

Given the closeness I had always craved.                  

I Had a new life – felt I had arrived,

But come the end I was to be deprived.

 

A relationship of five years standing

Was at this time to amount to nothing.                       

Destructive thoughts borne of my suffering

For the moment displaced all our caring.

 

But I’d wanted kids – more than just a mate;

She always claimed it was by now too late.                  

I was in no position to dictate -

With me she wanted none at any rate.

 

At that time my prospects were not secure;    

The current job did nothing to ensure                            

My freedom from the blues, a lasting cure,   

The uncertainty too much to endure.  

 

Such factors were all reasons for my flight;

In Australia family bonds drew tight.                          

 “Come with me” I had asked - until that night

I had hoped often she would see the light.     

 

To leave her home was more than she could bear

Theatre , galleries, work; this was where                   

Her identity was  tied and so there    

It was to be ‘the end of the affair’.

 

After all this you think you know the rest…

But there is more to this than you have guessed -         

For our connection has survived time’s test;

Thirty years on and trips back still exist…

 

                                                       Dave:  Mar’14

 

Comments7

  • Doggerel Dave

    Noticed one theme common at MPS is Love - found , gained, rejected (or ‘unrequited’ if you want to be fancy), lost. So here’s my contribution – never to be mentioned again.
    Autobiographical? – Well bits, it's complicated; certainly by no means all. Which bits? – Not telling. Please give me credit for a little creativity...
    Any comments on the two protagonists? Their motivations etc?

    PS: To whom it might concern: this is from my archive; note 2014 unaltered, nothing added.

  • MendedFences27

    The dialogue seems realistic. Two people of different mindsets. Your poem details the occurrence. Some people live their lives never having set foot outside of a small perimeter. For such as these it would be devastating to leave. She just did not have the courage to explore new vistas. Question - Did you consider staying?
    Never expected the continuation of contact. Surprised by that. But assume you make the trip.
    Thought provoking piece. Thanks - Phil A.

  • Doggerel Dave

    Thanks Phil for your reading. Oh I suppose I'll have to blow my cover a little (you will probably wish you had never asked -sorry about that!)
    First, M is not me - only bits. Some of W is M and some of M is W. Some pieces imported for the occasion. But I did my best to fit them both together into two coherent wholes.
    On the evidence as presented, my sympathies lie largely with W, I have to say.
    Women always expected to give up their individuality and move with the man. W's arguments there are irrefutable to me, and if I got anything out of this exercise at all, it made me feel a little better about myself for laying it out.

    Take care Dave
    PS: the actual me has returned to the UK a number of times since leaving in '87. Can confirm I have, for part of the time, lodged with a lady I knew when in London....

  • Goldfinch60

    As Phil has said it is very realistic but sometime relationships do not work even after many years. It did happen to me, my first wife and I divorced but then I found my Joyce but in all that time I was still friends with my first wife, she and her husband came up and stayed with us occasionally as Joyce and I did with them.
    Relationships can be many things, even just remaining friends.

    Andy

  • Doggerel Dave

    Absolutely Andy.
    I had two (serially monogamous) relationships in the
    '80's - possibly my most 'mature' decade. I still correspond with both.
    And both contribute in their own special, unique ways to 'W' in the script.

    Take care, Dave

  • Dove

    Thanks for sharing the dialogue, The poem I loved the best! Perfect rhymes; and of course heartfelt words ! Best to you

    • Doggerel Dave

      Thanks RB:
      I hope you could find enough romance underlying a somewhat fraught situation to satisfy you.
      I'm grateful also for your comment re the poetry's construction. All too often in discussion the topic is related to the content entirely and a quick salute to technique (if applicable) is forgotten. I'm guilty of this too.

      Best to you too, Dave

    • Neville


      interesting and realist dialogue .. for a moment, I thought I was eavesdropping on a neighbour .. an additionally well crafted poem tied everything together nicely ...
      ... Neville

      • Doggerel Dave

        Thanks for that Neville. Much appreciated.
        Regards Dave

        • Neville



          You are most welcome sir.

          All Good Things,

          Neville



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