Loneliness on the Road

by joelmckerrow

We pressed ourselves against each other, bodies touching, the swell of her womb soft through clothing. A Melody between us. A plane flies overheard and I am running late. We do not do this enough. The pressing. The holding. The sinking into each other. You can feel it in the way we peel away, like contact paper, I do not want to leave. Her body is home. After 11 years of marriage, her body is still home.

I have seen her laugh more with our son
then I have for some time now,
and how I hope to God
that adding one more little girl shall only deepen these lines.


I feel the loneliness. As soon as the car pulls away it presses in, the swell of its womb, soft through clothing, bodies touching. Loneliness. I do not want to leave. My son stares through the window, his lips mouthing one of the only words he has learnt to pronounce, “Daddy.” I cannot hear him. The blur of his face and he is gone. Lonely.

And its one more plane ride, one more taxi and one more conversation.
It’s one more hotel, one more gathering and one more lamentation.
One more
and one more
and one more
and one more.
Her body is home.
I am flying away.

You can usually tell within a moment if the person sitting next to you on a plane is the type to converse or to block out the world. I can be either. This day I block it all out. I do not want to meet another stranger. I do not want to make another friend. Headphones in ears. It is the same as hanging ‘Do not Disturb’ on a hotel door. Glen Hansard sings to me of sorrow. I think of my son.


He has no idea how long this shall be
and though seven days is a short time,
seven days
plus four days
plus three days
plus five days
plus two days,
they quickly add together.
It is a long moment of pause on this family.

But he doesn’t pause. He is growing everyday. New words. New motion. New connection. He stumbles less and runs more these days. Climbs over everything. Has learnt to have an opinion on what he wants and what he doesn’t. He loves making his parents laugh. Loves trying to get strangers to pay attention. He clings to his Mum every time she enters a room. They drive home together. I am flying away.

And its new lands,
new bands,
new stages,
new words,
new friends
and none of it matters if he misses his Father.