The Ofi Press Magazine

International Poetry and Literature from Mexico City

The Speed of Light

By Afric McGlinchey, Ireland (Published in Issue 20)

Afric's début poetry collection, The lucky star of hidden things, was published in 2012 by Salmon. Read more here. A review of The luck star of hidden things will appear in the September edition of The Ofi Press.


Image: Varvara Stepanova (plate 66)

Cinco figuras sobre fondo blanco (1920)


The speed of life


King kongs, bottle washers, genies

are lifted to colour air, light as glass.

Doors disappear down dwarf alley.

The marvelous boy drinking lake-cooled wine

knows that bees are few,

just as the boat-man knows a boat’s emotions,

and the wind knows that it’s tired, yet still braces wings

for nine last strokes of  havoc.

We walk on scarred and scraggy knees

through the gates of memory,

its silence leaching away the day, the decades,

until we are in a graveyard lake of detritus,

its unkind wave chasing.  We face spent grief,

empty our pockets, surrender.