All posts filed under: Dispossession

An Dúanaire

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 …

“When The Queen Falls In love” and other poems by Ingrid Casey

Jazz in a Northern City   Amidst turmoil, paindragon carried me for nights, to see the Goth. She was in Macbeth with the artist, the room was filling with books, miniature figures, heated exchanges, we rolled downhill, to the galleries. I filled her ears with chocolate, she was beaming. Her black Halloween curls twined around doorways, illustrated our friendship. There are silences, empathy in the space, in the difference squared between floor and ceiling. On this day there was Sun Ra, at perfect pitches, head phones suspended in a whole constellation. The child inside could reach a star, listen. It was dark, melodious, soothing, and definitely love.   The Boxer Reads To Me   Sit here, I dare you, again for Sakhalin, salon moments, pore over the Poet, crease of hip cut before me like diamonds, spine coilsprung to recite. Talk to me about la Motta, the animal, warm bright rocks on me the primal the literary ones, you are coal walls lit up, it’s dark, I’m awake with you.   A Sonnet with an …

‘Saturnian Girls’ and other poems by Anora Mansour

Saturnian Girls Orbit of cramped pantaloons you offered painted blood as an apology my love. And I take it in turns to disavow the tureen of your torment — your stone soup its coagulated colours seared by Farsi tea and a spoonful of breast milk. You often fantasise about my forest path cries amongst the de-coupled tombs where the travellers sleep and porcelain panthers creep. Some womenfolk are screws to their kin  Guards grasping for that infinite love.  The needle that weaves time. Wicked you made me weep over identity papers lost and then I knew you’d become another Him.  One of the happenstance  patsies of pain. Greedy confessors whose tittle are a fiddle from the hush city streets. Their fistula make you say Aha. I must shake the rack this bacchanal ruin  your Thanksgiving banquet  for the baying peasants. Beware the Saturnian sea-girls clutching sharp pink conch behind their backs, Their chosen weapon of defence.   Detroit Waters I’ll soon be free yes, restless me. Glass holding up honky tonk hells- Leaden water cities …

Poems by Valentina Colonna translated by Pawel Sakowski

  Ho raccolto un’ombra quando salivo le scale. Stava giusto scendendo.   Mentre toccavo le tegole ho perso un’idea. Rotolava avvolta tra i panni. Poi il vento ha smosso le fila: è scivolata travolta di vuoti.   Il carro stava giusto passando. – Flatus Fluit Ad Fortunae Fossam –   Ho appena cambiato l’acqua ai fiori.˜ I picked up a shadow when I was going up the stairs. It was just going down.   While I was touching the tiles I lost an idea. It rolled down wrapped in cloths. Then the wind moved the strings: and the idea slid away overwhelmed with emptiness.   A cart was just passing by. – Flatus Fluit Ad Fortunae Fossam –   I have just watered my flowers. Mentre cammino in terrazza la banda suona e ti dico “La senti?” Mi insegue da una parte all’altra del perimetro di confine al mio riso perché non sentano i vicini quest’allegria dei miei anni spaiati al vento. Così suona nella casa di fronte poi dietro in piazza, davanti al secondo piano …

A Celebration of Women’s Poetry for International Women’s Day 2018

  ‘A History of Love Letters’ by Seanín Hughes   Miss said every time I told a lie, Baby Jesus had a nail hammered into his hand. She said I had a sad mouth, corners downturned, pointing to hell.   Stephen with the p-h had a mouth like sunshine. I gave him a token: a tiny toy dinosaur egg, pale blue and gold. I wrote his name on my hand and hoped the egg would hatch.   My body grew and Granny said, never shave your legs, so I did. Better bald spring chicken; better descaled and plucked bare for boys to touch with their nervous fingers, and work me open.   The one who wrote love letters spilled his entrails in black Bic biro, telling me in no particular order the parts of me he liked best — some illustrated.   When Napoleon begged his Josephine to lay herself bare, he meant for her flaws to fold her into neat and precious squares — for her to be less than his clenched-fist heart could hold.   …