Home #Blue Nib Issues Issue 37 | March 2019 | Denise O’Hagan- New Poetry

Denise O’Hagan- New Poetry

A Stain the Shape of Italy

It’s when I least expect it
Stilled in a queue, perhaps,
Or stalled at traffic lights,
That the fingers of my memory
Pick at the past
Loosening the scabs of memory:
It’s irresistible.
One little prod
And the present flakes away
As I’m clutching my mother’s hand again
Down the cobble-stoned short-cut side street
Softened by the tread of centuries
To where her dressmaker lived;
Or recoiling at the garish wallpaper
In a rented room in a house for foreign ...


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