Feeling the love

Leaning into the hug

Swaying closer together

Holding each other in the dark

Amidst the unwashed pots from the

Evening meal of sumptuous vegetables

Picked straight from the home garden

After the brief, life-giving storm.

So fresh, tasty, nutritious

We’d crunched loudly

And ecstatically

Every, single






Of organic wine

Emptied, white and red,

Fuelled stories from our pasts

Prompted memories of our former lives

As cooler air flowed across still dry land

Wet briefly from the thundery sky

And the need, relieved, for

One evening at least

To water living

And dying







And tears

Each of us feeling

Tremulous shivers; quivering

As the other’s grief is so deeply recognized

And held in a growing sense—for a long time now—

That in these, these darkening hours, it is almost too late

To revisit these places loved, far away in distance and time

For these former worlds are nearly lost, yet not forgotten

By lovers embracing; closely-bound in love and grief

Each becoming, more, whole, coherent, and alive

Taking turns to surrender; vulnerably, drifting

As the other—more able, in that moment—

Turns, with courage, to face the waves

That loom and threaten to drown us

And holds both heads up to face

The unfolding harsh realities,

To focus, breathe and let

The rising waves pass

Through me, we.

I’ll hold you

Hold me




Feel it; how

The love for places, and

The love of cities, cultures, ecosystems

We each knew differently, from our other worlds

Arises in us differently through our shared new lenses

As Both the pleasures of our experiences

And the pain of our grieving losses

Simultaneously clamour

For our attention in

This moment

Being held

By both






Locked down

Locked in step, together

As the church bells toll, we count

As we do each night, hearing each chime

One | Two | Three | Four | Five | Six | Seven |Eight

And our neighbours clap, with respect, for those who care

Those who show up, gown up, mask up, and imperil their lives

On behalf of strangers they’ve never met and may never know

Standing by, holding space; loving doulas of life or death,

Whatever course destiny holds for those with them

Whatever path this moment reveals for them,

As they struggle with their next breaths.

But this night we do not join them

For we ourselves cannot bear

To separate right now

From this embrace

In these waves

This moment

As we hold

Our grief

Our love






We stand

Together, swaying

Holding each other in the dark

As we fondly remember, who we were

And the stories of our separate lives, far apart

Lives lived here and elsewhere, there and DownUnder

One of Nature, natural; the other of City, cultural

Both respecting, striving for more coherence

Between who we are now called to be

And who we each were then

I’ll hold you; you hold me

As in this moment

We become

WE, here





Neil Davidson

August 2020, Leuven, Belgium