Two Hundred and Thirty-Nine.


Izzy circle


I think of you in association with mango sorbet a lot. I find you very succulent and sweet.


Sarah circle


This world is all brown and hazy
from the cable-knit cardigans on the living room sofa
to the twice-folded fingers clutching the polished wood pipe
sending smoke to the corners of the close-curtained room
down a slope of wool and polyester to the thin socks on my grandfather’s feet
the grandchildren are gathered before him, hushed as in the presence of the holy
all knees and elbows and big bright eyes
hands clasped, solemn pilgrims, asking: ‘grandpa George, can we see your no toes?’
the kitchen light nudges the plastic rosaries, the travel-size bottle of tap water blessed by the Pope
the parents creak around the tiny kitchen table with Tupperware and 70s travel mugs
the deity nods, his eyes folded in laughter. The children huddle. The socks come off
and two pinkish broad feet ease out to the floor
two balls, two heels, two insteps and ankles
and not a single solitary toe on their strange flattened ends
we squeal in delight, as he chuckles back down
and we all chant together ‘no toes! no toes!’
the past must have been horror – diabetes, gangrene, surgical steel
but this is our sacrament, and we take it together
the giggling children, the creased brown wool old man
staring at no toes with horror and wonder
and calling it love



Have words to throw back at us?

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s