Thursday, 18 June 2015


I found you smashed tonight
No - not you
But my emblem,
My memory of you:

The mosaic plate you got me
For my 21st birthday,
Of Santa Maria Novella.

That time we went to Florence,
I opened the shutters into the square
And onto the world

I learnt you and Tata in a
New way then.
You snored gently,
Smelt of old,
Your mkhaba wrinkled but solid in your centre.

Tata took out his dentures

We spat watermelon pips in Rome

I started drinking coffee

I experience you as married

Not lovers, but companions.
With all the angles and curves
Accompanying that

I opened the shutters on
Santa Maria Novella square

And onto my life.
It snaked different ways after that trip.
I had a new palette for my joy
A new map

The square was dirty when I visited again
Years later

You were wizened
Too much poison in your roots

I found you smashed today
Santa Maria Novella
Mixed with instant coffee
On my kitchen floor

I saw you disappear
Last Thursday
When I couldn't get you in the car
Your body is still too heavy for me

You were angry
As i pried your hand from the seat
You had to hold onto me so I could get you in

You disappeared as you held onto me

The stroke
The poison
Ate you

I won't see you again.

I will remember Santa Maria Novella,
Watermelon pips in Rome

I won't clean the kitchen floor.

Not for a week,

I guess.

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