And when she was bad, she was very very bad
July 30, 2010 § Leave a comment
Above her the pines peered over the slates. ‘Farm shop.’ Bulb black. The mouth of the lane pursed its lips in grim refusal of sunlight. She lifted her eyes to the clouds, and watched a one-winged dove chase a flurry of soldiers. A family of snow-children appeared one by one in the heavens. ‘If you can’t stand the heat? Leave the continent.’
Sundays. Bowed heads. A boxing match in black and dirty white. A choir of pink-cheeked villagers. The smoke escaping shyly from the web of rooftops on the hill.
Leaning down she became a stretching orphan of summer gone, tanline disappearing into winter coverings. ‘Imagine yourself to be a cripple and count your able limbs.’ Glacial. Birds beating their wings to frighten frost from check-in desks. Love late on arrival. Beirut high on approval. Mercy on the sisters returning from the frozen north.
In her head she dreamt a valley, spun its colours with her fingers in a collision of noise. ‘The yellow beats its head against the wall; remember that a tunnel is merely a tunnel.’ All said, all dreaded.
A letter posted later coincided with the manoeuvre of butterflies. A bellyful, a dancing wake. ‘We bruise a deed well done, we will follow you down.’
The gate pointed its finger at her back as she retreated from the lane. A boy pursued her with blue eyes through the cover of ivy, and crept home with mind full of her curls and hopelessness.
The reddest apple here began its birth from a branch in Armagh, and sprouted a heart as heavy as the lake it leaned towards. She wielded steel like a breath attacked by hunger, and scissored under.