Poem by Eleanor Hooker (Ireland)
Published in The Ofi Press issue 37.
It is not thunder. It is her Grandpa’s old oak desk,
dragging itself about in the attic, searching for a slip
of slate that lets in the sky. While the basilisk
sleeps, she will risk a further ascent into the dark, trip
up and up the soundless stair to renew her scholarship
in rain, in separations. Once she tempts the desk with diabetic ink
drops, it will allow her access to the Affairs of Hail, to a Fellowship
in The Departed. An attic chest coughs camphor musk, a lurid stink
that preserves the unused baptismal gown, but rusts her doll’s slow blink,
makes it cry black tears. The desk unbolts, coaxes her back
with an archangel of nightingales, with song letters unburned; links
to the green man who delivered her world, her periodic insomniac.
But 'the past is a foreign country: they do things differently there',
there can be no return, consequence must be borne, irrepressibly bare.
Eleanor Hooker’s debut collection of poems The Shadow Owner's Companion (Dedalus Press) was launched February 2012. She is working to complete her second collection of poetry. She is an RNLI Lifeboat Helm & Press Officer for Lough Derg RNLI Lifeboat. www.eleanorhooker.com
Image: "The Attic" by Jamie Beverly.