Today is the anniversary of my mum’s death, well, it’s actually tomorrow by date, but today is the same day. Twelve years ago. The same sort of a day, too: bright sunshine, milk blue sky. Some years I can manage today without howling too much….Anyhow, this is a joyous poem for Eileen ( I might post the sad one later)….
I loved those days in autumn when you’d still be out at dusk,
breathing in the last heat,
smelling of green,
I’d take you a sherry and you’d take off your gloves.
We smiled at sherry.
We liked its warm descent.
I’d bring the bottle out and a cardi and we’d have another,
resting the bottle on the moss stump.
And we’d talk of plants and soil and muck and weeds
and argue about where best to put the poppies,
the new ones, the ones that shiver at the slightest breath,
petals the colour of old silk knickers.
And the bit we liked best?
The indigo powdered centre, the whorish hidden middle.
I’d leave you, shaded blue against turquoise sky
and I’d hear the clank of tool against wheelbarrow,
tools older than you
oiled and sharpened and cosseted.
I’d hear the shed door close, padlock click
and the blackbirds flicking their song into the evening.