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Jun: Poetry Space
Anne Stewart (Birthday)
Katherine Gallagher (Anytime)
I watch my father for signs, as if
checking for the rash of a disease,
but his suit is buttoned-black,
the careful knot in his tie, you could see
a face in his shoes. We drink whisky
out of glasses too good to use and eat
thin slices of ham on-the-bone in our front room
with her sister Rosie who’s the spit.
Out come the photos, the holiday at Butlins,
my mother in a halter-neck and pencil skirt
shoulders bare, hair blown back.
Then I see too much of him wanting
her to walk in and say Put the glasses away
we’re saving them for best.