The problem I see with the Panguna women’s groups
Death of Bro Brendan Crowe, apostle of the Goilala students



An entry in The Crocodile Prize
Kina Securities Award for Poetry

We sit and stare at each other
Seconds and minutes go by
My heart burdened, I watch her nervously
Her brown eyes stare directly at me
With grief deep inside
She awaits my word
And I await hers before I begin
But those sad eyes stare back at me

I try to stretch a nice big smile
I try to blink a flame of hope
Look away for distraction and courage
But these efforts so wasted
Her innocent eyes like arrows
Pointing directly at me
For answers I cannot give

I gather my thoughts and form some words
I try to speak and let them escape
I want to sound calm
But the thought of her response stills my voice 
Her eyes begin to fill with tears
And I realise I am going to lose

With a rush of pain I mumble “I love you”
A familiar phrase meaning nothing to her
A phrase no longer provoking affection
She wipes the tears from her eyes
As her sad face transforms with hurt
I swallow hard and pause for thought

But before I can reach out to her
Before I can get hold of her
Before I can figure what to do
She stands and begins to run
Heading towards the bridge
Heading toward her fate
The place we first met
The place she goes depressed

I run knowing what will happen
I run fast as fear grips my strength
If I can reach her in time
I will promise it won’t happen again
And this promise I will never break
That I will be fair
That I will be true
That I will stand by
For now I fully know
I am not prepared to let her go

My panting is louder
My vision of her fades
Panic pumps my throat
I feel a lump grow big
I have to reach her
I have to be quick

And as I reach the bridge
I drop down, arms round my head
And scream with agony
As before me she hangs
Without a smile
Without a word

Gone like the wind
Never to be heard
Never to be held
And never to be by my side again


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