RDW's poems

Romeo and Juliet Matter

The thing about Romeo and Juliet is: they die.  That grabs me.
They fall in love, fantastically, and they die.  They have to.

Or- Romeo comes home fat and fifty, and reads the paper
while Juliet watches the telly, and he never sees her.
Or- after a few months they drift apart, and start dating other lovers.
Or- they don’t get on and he hits her and they go to a marriage counsellor.
Or- they run out of money and time and spirit, and nag and have silences.
Or- Romeo and Juliet and the baby.

It’s not that I wanted to dive through love into desperation
those months when I carried my copy of Romeo and Juliet in my pocket.
It’s just that, really, it’s tragedy that made Romeo and Juliet matter,
and I wanted to matter.

June 2005


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