All posts filed under: 25 Pins in a packet women creators

The Penelopiad

“Birth Mother” and Other Poems by Srilata Krishnan (K.Srilata)

Birth Mother We are standing in front of the mirror, my daughter and I, brushing our hair and being vain when I think of the doctor’s question: “What was her birth cry like?” I don’t know and never will. She is fine, or will be, I know. But looking in the mirror and into her almond eyes, I wonder what she is like – her birth mother – if she too, was once, afraid of words and of the fluttering of pigeons, if she has nicely formed arches on her feet and whether or not her eyebrows make a bow for good luck, if she is small and slender-waisted, if she is anything like my daughter, or was. Strange, but I don’t wonder at all about the father. I tug at her pony. “Amma, let’s go”, she urges into a mirror that is slowly swallowing her birth mother. Our eyes meet in that eye of a little god and she smiles the sort of smile that is like mine.   What Penelope Said to Ulysses …

phrase to image by C. Murray

Phrase: ‘The bowed white orchid takes so long to open, I am unsure if he is alive or dead.’ (notebook date: 05/02/2019)     Image bowed, the white orchid encloses his white flame– slow to unfold, slowly, his enpetalling— he waxes, wanes — with  moon’s white-lamp-globe   I do not know if he drinks– phrase to image is © C. Murray from garden notes /light

“Since She Did That” and other poems by E.D. Hickey

Home I rub, and RUB my eyes; Ferocious; Don’t, Don’t, sweetheart. Then the plane tips toward the cool thick Irish sea So that I can face it Gaze into it From my seat. Home! Clouds bubble over the razor wings The light jumps into my tired gaze. Home!   Steel There must be steel in women Who say no. I am made of utter fudge Compelled, somehow, to reply and smile And be grateful for the fleeting interest. This is exactly the kind of thing A better me Would never do.   August I have never been so hollow I will never be so hollow I just felt so hollow When I refused to fix it When you left that city a day too early When you cried to your mother on the phone She doesn’t even know me I wish I could tell her I was sorry.   Stucco I want to build I want to – I need to restructure Gut my foundations Cut into the old black brick below me Throw it …

The North, Issue 61 (January 2019)

Into the Light Blown Dark: Working with Freda Laughton’s ‘Now I am a Tower of Darkness’   Now I am a Tower of Darkness   As a child I knew How, beyond the lamp’s circuit, Lay the shadow of the shadow Of this darkness,   Waiting with an arctic kiss In the well of the staircase, Ready to drape the bed with visions No eyelids can vanquish.    Now I am a Tower of Darkness by Freda Laughton from A Transitory House (Jonathan Cape, 1945).   Freda Laughton produced one book of poetry, A Transitory House (Jonathan Cape, 1945). At the time of the book’s publication, Freda Laughton would have been 38 years old. Laughton’s chosen sphere was the female intimate, and within this context she was an expressionist of some ability. Her work presaged that of Eavan Boland and of Nuala Ni Dhomhnaill. There is a certain fragility and darkness in Laughton’s expression which imbues it with shadow. Her art was masterful, not least in the poem In a Transitory Beauty,   Maternal the …

“A Guide to Feel-Good Doom” and other poems by Lisa Ardill

Dimples I am the wind that sighs at night through your bedroom window making your lovely hairs take flight. They rest against your cheek like affectionate little arms, and cling to your freckled flesh, its rosy flush their one dimpled source of life. Those could be my arms, holding fast to that imperfect reservoir into which I slip further each moment, sliding towards that gentle dip at the centre of your smooth skin. there is one on each side, To kidnap both mind and matter. The day I tumble into that tiny pool of love I will drown. and then I will float in your falling tears that follow me down whether those of sadness or joy, I will never know but either will hold me captive. Colourful Language your words are like flowers that come alive in a cold spring shooting from the ground with a gentleness that encumbers a hidden force they unearth their surroundings and mask others with their wondrous scent but sometimes their beauty is only soil deep the meaning tucked …