Family Photograph

‘No-no!’ I shouted ‘the fish tank will stay in my room!’
The golden dead creature, floating on the green water,
had my mother’s face
before she went away.
I liked to keep everything neatly
in the same place where she left them,
undisturbed by the melting sun.

The dust shined
on the glass lid,
on the doll’s eye,
on my forehead
each night
when asleep in the hallway.

I sat down on the cracked lino,
covered my arms with leafs
and kept watching Clara tidying-tidying the house.
Her yellow fingers piled everything in a black bag.
She left the fish alone, with a sigh.

Looking at her moves up and down the stairs
I thought she looked a bit like
the one-winged butterfly
unable to jump out
through the shut window.

I wondered what butterfly meat tasted like,
if sliced with a silver blade;
what mother tasted like
in the moment I was released
honey coated pearl.
I put my elbow close to my lips
and smelled to see
if she was somehow hiding in there.

Clara tripped over my spread legs
but kept singing.
She did not look ahead.
I looked ahead
at each room
with a serious face.
My empty baby skin rested
on top of the rubbish bin.

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Installation: Rita Fenning

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Tempus

The other day I ordered a new pen
I went out to buy a new skin
With the sole purpose of writing your name on it.
The pen arrived with a great noise
My stretched back was ready to carry
The weight of the words but
Could not remember anymore
What to call you.

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Ink drawing: Manuell Manastireanu

A Sense of Duty

Hey, today I do not like apples
They remind me of lost teeth
And I do not sleep as I wait for the rain to stop.

I am ready to jump out of my skin
And say oi! come here world I’m ready to fight you.

You say not the fight is important
But the peace I will make with everything and everybody before I go
The way I love words and soap and your hands, as they quietly rest on the wooden table.

Hey, today I do not like letter ‘s’
It reminds me of separation but after all
You think without ‘s’ there would be no wide-sargasso-sea or stealth
And no serpent or sin or self regard but
A sudden absence.

And I …..keep…..quiet.
I let you start a revolution on my behalf
You the one to decide the colour of this red sea.