That mysterious face in those ancient photos is Nana Caty
Mother dying assumes just such a thin gypsy look
Lew wants to cut up the ancient photo album to display mothers face
I turn away as he unties the withered bootlaces binding tiny images
there will be others .
Big bumblebees patrol the air, giant blackback gulls ride the front rolling rain
in from the heads
fat tuis tumble out from the trees
Orcas sniff clean modern waters
where royal albatross once paddled for blood scraps
Auntie Dorothy checks the doorway to see who is arriving for Ro's funeral
leaning into her walking stick,
Auntie Pat walks in, has a good look
Ivan Skinner, inventor of the earthquake shake table, startled to be still alive
Margaret Mary, reflecting on another round for the black dress.
Marian and Anne noshows, something about Mother scares them still.
Justine is here from Clapham Junction, Karen is in from San Salvador.
Margaret Rieger, made it from Palmie, shocking the world with Christianity in wartime.
He reads from the gospel of Mary Magdalene, The Beloved Disciple at the foot of the cross
The Basilica is bereft of its festoons of Cambrian cobwebs
Gabrielle Gavin cycles around the world.
Paul Gavin in a white striped blazer at father's funeral.
Mother takes her last breath, stops, startled by some realization, at last, there,
in that place, the front porch to some hallway to a staircase,
Wonderful hint of a gathering behind a carefully varnished doorway
Paul holds his supremely confident baby, who enters without question.
Anna's child keeps her gaze with no unease
Old cups, surely thats not all from those packed gown nights?
The whiskey decanter is smashed, something must be broken at each death.
The BVM still stands riding the crescent moon
crushing beneath her heel the dwarf of reason.
Googies Chinese lamp, cant find a place to put it, believe I dont need the
light. Greed for life, all those early technocolor movies.
Kena crashes in the noisy flat in Willis
just down from where we sat in Suzy's before Godard movies in the
Silly Wellington shapes, forgiveness.
Moving mother through some narrow doorways,
putting her on trestles, what's her best height
Why slip into those anxieties, didnt we roll up that carpet
years ago? another drink? and then?
Tim's trumpet tone, the weight of coffin handle, turn away,
Dr.Mary Day (maths) careless of her cousins
Kevin misses the plane.
Jo is on the phone.
Mother takes a hit of Pethidine upstairs, such labour.
He has forgotten that girls name, who vamped the butcher boy while
hiding pregnant in Grandad's bedroom.
He washes death from his hands three times.
in the airport toilet. Face,nose, mouth rinsed.
Surgical lever taps aseptically elbowed.
His wife calls from a tricycle in dark Novaliches, To
love, to speed into dawn through the vegetable markets of an Asian Capital
surrounded by smiles going back to the Island. Children's sounds noisy down the phone.
To shovel sticky Makara clay onto such dark roses.