Paradise Lost by Lynn White

It was paradise,
a perfect life in the sunshine
for the two of them.
Eating the luscious fruits,
drinking the succulent juices.
Wanting for nothing.
to know the reason for it all.
To know
where they came from,
where they were going,
what point there was to it all.

To understand it all
would take some thought,
some working out,
some researching
of their paradise.
They would need to exercise
their intelligence
to find the answers
to all these questions.
Then they could be content again
in their paradise
with their new found knowledge.

It came to them suddenly,
the penny dropped
not the apple.
In a flash of understanding
they saw that
tomorrow could be different
That one tomorrow
would certainly
be different.
That human life doesn’t go on
and on without an end.
It will end
and it’s ending is unpredictable,
the where and how and when

How could they live with this knowledge
and remain in paradise.
This was a new question to ponder.
No research could tell them the answer.
No exercise of their intelligence
could tell them
or how,
their lives would end
however much they tried
to work it out.
What hell
to live with this knowledge,
the knowledge that they couldn’t know,
the end.

So they were lost,
driven from paradise.
Knowing that death
would come
to them,
someway, sometime.
That it was unpredictable
and unalterable
however much they knew.
What hell
to live with such knowledge
for the rest of their lives.
Waiting for death to surprise them,
jump out on them.
And knowing
that for them,
there would be
no re-awakening,
no spring.

© 2018 Lynn White


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Lynn White lives in north Wales. Her work is influenced by issues of social justice and events, places and people she has known or imagined. She is especially interested in exploring the boundaries of dream, fantasy and reality. Her poem ‘A Rose For Gaza’ was shortlisted for the Theatre Cloud ‘War Poetry for Today’ competition 2014. This and many other poems, have been widely published. Find Lynn at:


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