Shadows hang over us

كتب تشوكاي بيلي

يحكي الشعر عن رفيقتي التي قضيت معها ثلاث سنوات خلال عقد التسعينات عشنا فيها في لوس انجليس في أمريكا. كانت محامية تدافع عن أطفال المهاجرين الذين يفقدهم ذويهم للتبني الإجباري. وكنت أنا مغنياً في فرقة الروك. بعد أن انتهت علاقتنا، تركت هي المحاماة وذهبت للعيش في براغ لتدريس الانكليزية حين عاد عليها سرطان الثدي. توفيت في كونيكتيكت عام ٢٠٠٣ ولم أعلم إلاّ في ٢٠٠٦ صدفةً من الانترنت. صُدمت وكان الشِعر.


The story behind Shadows is about my late ex. We were together for 3 years during the 90’s, living in Los Angeles. She was a lawyer who worked for the Family Court system defending immigrant families about to lose children to foster care; I was a musician in a rock band. She quit being an attorney after we split up. We had a falling out and I moved to Holland. She moved to Prague to teach English when her breast cancer returned. She died in Connecticut in 2003 but I didn’t find out until 2006 via the internet and wrote the poem whilst in shock.

by Chuquai Billy

Shadows hang over us like a spider’s thread, 

Like the calm before the storm. Like endless days of summer,

Like cosy slow nights of winter;

I’m not as young as I used to be,

I’m not as old as I think I am;

Bells rang over us like a sound garden in the key of red

And when I asked you to conspire with me to rob the bank of time you ran to the hills

Away from suspense and away from calculated thrills;

Sleeping by the ocean waves

We were a couple of bears hiding inside Westside caves

Under a million stars like birds, we could have flown away

Greeting the sunrise like a prayer;

It wasn’t such a long-distance dream

Or a fly-by-night scheme,

It could have happened if only you believed.

Clouds gather below us

Like the snowy playground of angels

And I wonder if you are really gone to non-existence in a cold Connecticut ground

Resurrected only my memories of you,

Or are you still occasionally around

Watching me when I’m rainy and down,

The trends of protocols are mutations influenced by popular demand,

We’re all still looking for enlightenment

Trying to be happy with the latest tools at hand

And hope is easily shattered even when you try to understand,

Time always quiet and still when you’re not looking.

And I wonder if you always knew the clock was ticking our hours away 

Trying to fit everything inside the limitations of “just for today”

Do you shake your head in dismay of the latter day?

Have all your questions been answered by now?

Do you dazzle in a kind of after-glow, calm and centred?

Yearning for a familiar touch;

Or do you miss the dramas and exciting frustration of mortal linear time and the hesitant expectation of joy?

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