The hand, an aching red —
winched to some forgery of continuity.
If I was Cézanne I would paint whole chunks of it blue,
under the knuckle, the crease of the palm, the thighy
fork between finger and thumb. There’s too much red
in the thirst and ladders, the pints and glorias of great falls
from yawning pedestals. If the children are bored have them
lift boxes, label and build them to a perfect wall between
us. You could feed yourself on apples, freeze them to keep
us through the winter. I’d imagine once you get past the
skin you’d have to lick at them, lap like a warm dog. Off
colour I am, salt-water. I’d tattoo lighthouse, sailboats, seagulls,
finely pointillistic sand, bits of shells, and a gamey anchor on
the remaining skin. Then we could wade low into me, heave
dinghies away from hot little piers, the quays of my gut. Sit
silent on this island and savour the sense of purpose in survival
Shipwrecked sailor, she drowned while standing still and staring
at her own fine feet. I am a copper-dipped minute. They’re home.
I open the windows to taste the day’s change and the far-away song
of nearing voices, time oxidizing, hand still raw and sunk in dish-sud.
Finola Cahill is a writer and musician based between Paris and the West of Ireland. Her poetry has previously been published in The Bell, Paris Lit Up and The Irish Times. Her band, Pembroke, can be found on all the usual streaming platforms.
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