The Other Life

in memory of Emily Riall

 

 

I want to wake up in a house

where the ghosts have recently departed,

 

persuaded to leave by prayer

infused with wordless singing,

 

its roomy silences punctuated

by waves and far-off bells.

 

I want to visit a village,

its market infecting the alleyways

 

with tables groaning with cheeses,

gossip and outdoor coffee,

 

where they call me my childhood nickname;

may I know and taste the air there,

 

a whiff of salt and apples,

a backnote of conker and dog;

 

and may it be endlessly Saturday,

the bonfires yet to start drifting towards the blue.

 

from Riddance (Worple Press, 2012)