I'd Die For You by Hebe Reilly

If I were still in love with you;
I’d buy you this book.

You’d enjoy the long lost element of the tale,
gold lettering on hardback teal,
hints of a classy generation,
that only exists in fiction.

A time for monocled men and long skirted ladies,
saving their ankles for those in the other room,
sipping liquor, smoking opium,
indulgent conversation.

If I were still in love with you;
I’d buy you this book.

I’d enjoy your smile as you placed it carefully between fingertips,
watch with joy as the words light up your eyes.

I think this,
standing alone,
in a bookshop.
6 years after we said goodbye,
love never really dies.

Even after opening itself like a crisp, linen hankie,
repeatedly creased and crumbled,
and returned, different somehow, ruined, slightly.
It never will fit, again, just right,
in the top pocket of my dad’s blazer.

But, I can breathe with your memory,
think of a time when this gift would have made your day.

Now I'm sure you wouldn’t know what to say,
you’d think me mad, or pathetic and certainly a little sad.
To bring you a smile after all these years,
after teasing and provoking all those tears,
but still, somehow, love resonates when struck,
glancing at F.Scott Fitzgerald’s forgotten book,
Even after all these years.

Hebe Reilly writes poems in her pyjamas.