The Ofi Press Magazine

International Poetry and Literature from Mexico City

Shepherds Law, Northumberland

 By Pippa Little (UK), Featured in Issue 22.

 

Image courtesy of Liliana Perez (Mexico)

"Abandoned Church"

 

 

 

Pippa Little was born in Tanzania, raised in Scotland and now lives in Northumberland. She is the recipient of an Eric Gregory Award, The Andrew Waterhouse Prize, The Biscuit International Poetry Prize and The Norman MacCaig Centenary Poetry Prize. Her work has appeared in Magma, Poetry Review, Orbis, Northwords Now, New Edinburgh Review and many other text journals and online; her work appears in several anthologies, including Oxford Poets 2010, The Captain’s Tower (Seren), Best British Poetry 2011 (Salt) and Soul Feathers (Indigo Dreams).

Her pamphlet The Spar Box (Vane Women, 2006) was a Poetry Book Society Pamphlet Choice. Subsequent collections and pamphlets include Foray (Biscuit Press, 2009), The Snow Globe (Red Squirrel, 2011) and Overwintering (Oxford Poets/Carcanet, 2012).

 

Dusk and a full moon risen.

Candles rinsed by daylight

dim now

softly on the western side.

 

And the clock heart swells,

steady, clear drops,

source-water upon stone.

Over the dome curve

October wind

huffs and puffs to come in.

 

Mother of this place,

Mary Eileen Palmer,

pray for all souls travelling,

foot-weary, coming in from the far hills

 

to your floors sleek-skinned as a lake,

walls milk-white yet

the old dark lapping

deeper, and

luminous in the doorway

 the soul already sent,

chrysalis

scrolling

on unseen thread.

Breakfast with Diane Arbus

  By Pippa Little, UK (Featured in Issue 1)

 

She looks at me, really looks,
like I’m a mirror smeared with lipstick.
Lights up. Maybe I look better through a mask of smoke.
You don’t get enough sleep, I think,
rims of your eyes all red like a lab rat’s.
And your smoke tastes bad, late-night bar counters
wiped over,  all those lost fingerprints.

I meet her eye for eye.
Look, she says, mouth sideways, slides me
a fan of prints.
I spill them open :
they keep on going, a spiral staircase
round and down, round and down
and me on every step,
or slivers of my selves –

I can’t see where I end!
I am, all of me,
bad as a bruised apple,
wrong and wrong and wrong
as a whoop at a funeral.

She lifts her coffee to her lips, perfects
the cup’s white edge with
one red bite, and sets it down.

 

 

 Pippa Little lives in Northumberland, England, but was born in Tanzania of Scots parents. She has two collections of poetry, The Spar Box and Foray, with a third forthcoming from Oxford Poets/Carcanet in 2012. Winner of the Norman MacCaig Centenary Poetry Prize, an Eric Gregory Award, the Andrew Waterhouse Award and the Biscuit International Poetry Prize, her work has appeared in many magazines and anthologies. She's proudest of her three sons, one of whom edits The Ofi!