Sorting by Clint Wastling

When I walk by The White Horse and Griffin
on Whitby’s old Church Street 
I remember trinkets found
when mum downsized to a retirement flat.
She snatched the box from me. 
You can’t throw that!
This will give you some idea of our task:
place card holders, a receipt for grandparent’s honeymoon 
dated 1935, confetti, a tarnished lapel pin.


Throwing away the past can be cleansing,
can be painful, always a little loss
and if we are preservers of the past
then I am growing toward mother’s view:
let others decide,  let the future obliterate.
Letters read again, photos seen,
all the love there was evidenced
in all the love there’s been,
spent in a million kisses


a hundred thousand wishes
preserving all that’s gone before.
Names from this box of trinkets.
Now when I walk by The White Horse and Griffin
On Whitby’s old Church Street,
I remember that hotel bill and pause--
my grandparents walked through these doors
took their honeymoon here
where past and present meet. 

---

Clint Wastling’s  poetry has been published in Blue Nib, Dream Catcher, Strix, Marble and  online with The Algebra of Owls. Clint has a collection – Layers published by Maytree Press.  His poem The Lefty Revolution was a winner in the 2018 Northern Writes Award. His novel, The Geology of Desire, is an LGBTQ thriller set around Whitby in the 1980’s and Hull during World War II (Stairwell Books). 


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