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The Other Armitage. To his lost lover

Last autumn I was looking for vids of Richard Armitage reading poems.

I think I don’t need to write why.

Sometimes a girl just needs Armitage to hear the whisper of a poem in her ear.

I think I needed some audio to this visual.

I punched in Armitage poetry into the search engine and among the many options I came across a poem.

It had been written by Armitage, although not Richard, but Simon.

I remember it resonating with me and I felt very moved by it.

A little later I tried to find it again.

The only thing I could remember was Armitage, poetry and how it made me feel.

I couldn’t remeber the title, I couldn’t remember a single word from the poem.

I could only remember how it struck a cord.

Since autumn I had been searching every now and again, but with no sucess… until tonight!

So, it is my pleasure to share with you.

To his lost lover by Simon Armitage

Now they are no longer
 any trouble to each other
he can turn things over, get down to that list
of things that never happened, all of the lost
unfinishable business.
For instance… for instance,
how he never clipped and kept her hair, or drew a hairbrush
 through that style of hers, and never knew how not to blush
at the fall of her name in close company.
How they never slept like buried cutlery –
two spoons or forks cupped perfectly together,
or made the most of some heavy weather –
walked out into hard rain under sheet lightning,
or did the gears while the other was driving.
How he never raised his fingertips
to stop the segments of her lips
from breaking the news,
or tasted the fruit
or picked for himself the pear of her heart,
 or lifted her hand to where his own heart
was a small, dark, terrified bird
 in her grip. Where it hurt.
Or said the right thing,
or put it in writing.
And never fled the black mile back to his house
before midnight, or coaxed another button of her blouse,
then another, or knew her
favourite colour, her taste, her flavour,
and never ran a bath or held a towel for her,
or soft-soaped her, or whipped her hair
into an ice-cream cornet or a beehive
 of lather, or acted out of turn, or misbehaved
when he might have, or worked a comb
where no comb had been, or walked back home
through a black mile hugging a punctured heart,
where it hurt, where it hurt, or helped her hand
to his butterfly heart
 in its two blue halves.
And never almost cried,
and never once described
an attack of the heart,
or under a silk shirt
nursed in his hand her breast,
her left, like a tear of flesh
wept by the heart,
where it hurts,
or brushed with his thumb the nut of her nipple,
 or drank intoxicating liquors from her navel.
Or christened the Pole Star in her name,
or shielded the mask of her face like a flame,
a pilot light,
or stayed the night,
or steered her back to that house of his,
or said “Don’t ask me how it is
I like you.
I just might do.”
How he never figured out a fireproof plan,
or unravelled her hand, as if her hand
were a solid ball
 of silver foil
and discovered a lifeline hiding inside it,
 and measured the trace of his own alongside it.
But said some things and never meant them –
sweet nothings anybody could have mentioned.
And left unsaid some things he should have spoken,
about the heart, where it hurt exactly, and how often.

About Agzy The Ripper

Sew, Rip, Repeat... and love each moment of it! Join me as I embark on a myriad of sewing and crafting shenanigans.

18 responses »

  1. À fine poem indeed! thanks for sharing

  2. I understand how this could be unforgettable. Thank you for looking until you found it again to share with us. Have a great week!

  3. This is a gorgeous poem, many thanks.

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  7. Really happy you found it again. Such a beautiful poem and so ull of emotion. Thank you so much for sharing it. Don’t you just wish someone would record Richard reading it? *sigh*

    • Oops! That should read “so full of emotion”!! 😀

    • Yes, yes I do. I wish Richard would go into a studio and record either poems or an audiobook. We’re so lucky he’s done so many so far, but what can I say, I’m a greedy little monkey and I want MORE!

      • I’m afraid I’m greedy too!! I wonder if he has anything lined up for the next couple of months or so until he heads back to NZ? I can’t see him taking a lot of time off but I wish he would have a break and relax a bit! He deserves it. 🙂 I don’t always pick on my typos but many years ago before I could type very well I took on the job of typing my husband’s term papers and his thesis for a degree he was taking. The Prof never asked who did the typing and no doubt assumed it was my husband. He was so severe and I got very upset when he picked up on the tiniest error in punctuation or typos and it’s stuck with me!! I really need to learn to let it go! 🙂

        • I wish I cared more about typos, but I always think life is too short. I’ve had people be mean and ‘joke’ about them to the point where I felt I had to write a post about the issue.
          Back to RA, if he does have something lined up it may well be the last moment to get him cheap for projects like audiobooks, because once the Hobbit comes out, I very much doubt he’ll be willing to do Heyer recordings. I also wonder how his schedule has changed with the announcement of the 3rd Hobbit film and more shooting in NZ. What project did he have to give up?
          We really need a respectful mole in Richard’s circle who would give us these little harmless tidbits 🙂


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