The Day That Didn’t Exist

A poem for what could have been.

Photo by Scott Webb from Pexels

I drift aimless through the empty pews
Didn’t anyone hear the news?
What’s a bride with no groom?
Where’re the happy faces to fill the room?

No bouquets, no sashes, not even petals
When I think back, that familiar fog settles
Is the date wrong? No, I would never
Did I forget about ties I let sever?

No, he loves me, but where is he now?
The sun is just right, delays I can’t allow
The bell is silent, I was told it would ring
I look for a staff member, though I hate complaining

I spot the pastor, clear my throat as I approach
But he doesn’t see me, walks right by like I’m a ghost
Incensed, affronted, my jaw drops in shock
I stomp after him and grab at his frock

I miss somehow, the fabric slips my fingers
That itching in my mind still lingers
Frowning, I think hard, around me I see
Shadows of what should be

Flower girls and ushers roam
A priest at the altar prepares his tome
Figments of guests gossip and mill about
I shout for attention, but no sound comes out

Why can I see straight through them?
There’s the same priest, why two of him?
One is solid, one is not
I’m watching as the penny drops

Memories come rushing back
I know why I’m a bride in black
I’m supposed to be here today
But something else got in the way

I’m drawn here out of sense of purpose
But other events rise to the surface
Everyone I recognise is a ghost of a future lost
Paid as penance because my path crossed

That of a bullet, not so long ago
I laid on the pavement and watched my blood flow
With it went my hopes, my dreams, my life
Now I stand on the day I was to become a wife

Here in spirit, mind and soul,
Without a body for my love to hold