When I look through a gap in a ruin,
a jigsaw of light hanging there, a crooked eye
that could take me through the
hole in the wall,
so bright
it looks white, a telescope
of gaps into –

what is sacristy?

These previous walls,
filled in windows,
sky roof and hot sun
punctuating gaps of wind weave,

before years of never dying
unweave to

my father,
his open mouth,
white sheets,

and us holding a cup of tea
on the hottest day of the year
in the darkened room,

the wind barely
picking through,

and they couldn’t close his mouth.

In Her Sunday Best

Dear Mum,

You need a hat today,
hearing the muffled tap of its brim –
a grey felt with ribbon band on the hall table,
with the sun like an unfurled rose
set in a glass
snipped this morning from your father’s rose bush;
he gave you cuttings from a garden
always full of June
and I am living in a long line of plants.

You are wearing the shirt-waisted dress
in yellow rose print
stitched into 1952;
a blackbird on the tallest roof
yellow beak tilted open –
his voice another fine Sunday;
blue shadows fall at the bottom of the road,
ruffled nets at the window.

I am being born
into Chanel No. 5,
face powder and hair spray,
drifting from the bedroom –
I can smell your wardrobe
when I unwrap your pearls.

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