Valentine’s Day


my heart is a nightwatchman who

still fears the dark, a warrior woken

in peacetime by phantom gunfire

crashing through his dreams


my beloved walks even when there is

nowhere to be, feet duty-bound to shake off pursuers

who have long since

lost his scent.



my heart is a child among the gravestones, skipping

over resting bones and hiding

in the shadows of stone angels

pulling with impatience on the skirts of women

who stand and murmur over lush grass:

Our Father, who art in Heaven


my love collects stray petals, blown

from other people’s vases, and does not understand

why they must be taken back.



my heart is a widow leaving roses

in the sun, to fade and die

in honour of a love that never will, a sorrow

that grows quiet but

plays on.


my sweetheart is a callused hand that still

slips into mine on

winter mornings, a laugh that still bursts out

in hushed rooms.



my heart goes on other people’s dates and

reads bedtime stories to other people’s children and

commits to other people’s weddings and beats

fastest in pursuit of things that

are not there.



my heart is you but it is not


Image: Samuel Zeller


12604884_938045556278844_8510716116722563605_o (1) copyJane Symonds is an alleged poet, would-be novelist and actual fundraiser. Read more of her words at

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One Comment

  • Kate commented on March 18, 2016 Reply

    This does that thing for me that all great poetry does, makes me have feelings without knowing exactly why. So sensory!

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