without power

when the power went out we were ready
the oil lamps were always filled
the white candles stood in their holders
all was warmth and comfort

we gathered more brushwood and bracken
kindled the fire, make it crackle,
piling on logs and driftwood
we had dried in the yard in the summer

the kettle was boiling,
bread steadily rising,
as we sat near the wood stove,
silently gazing, drifting in dreams,
telling stories and fantasies

hot baths in steam and candlelight
snuggling under thick blankets
while the wind rattled the roof tiles
making a flute of the drainpipes
life went on unchanging, undaunted

when the power came back
we flicked a switch and turned on the radio
the world stepped back into the house
bringing nothing of value

tonight in another time and place
i live in another era, with no power
the house instantly grows colder
i wander about with a battery torch
in rooms full of shadows

i missed you more
than the woodsmoke and firelight
and any old luxuries of survival
but none of it matters now


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