and in the shop…
“The Goose Woman”
“Stories & Lies”
(with Pamela Johnson and Jennifer Grigg)
Blue Door Press;
“Born in the NHS”
(with Wendy French)
“Second Exile” *
(with Aleš Macháček),
“The Man Who Sold Mirrors”
“Stealing the Eiffel Tower”,
* & in Czech translation –
“Don’t Mention Her”
Blue Door Press
The moss is growing up to the gate
please call me if you are coming. I will go to the bridge
and meet you. I could walk to Újezdec
search for crystals in the ditch on the way to the quarry
but might miss you.
I could lie in the hammock, try to read
not see dust from the car as you pass the brickworks
or clear out dried hives from the shed
how would I know where to put them
if you need them
or weed the basil in your salad garden
what if I pull out your seedlings?
I should keep deer away from shoots of horse-chestnut
we took from your grandfather’s grave in Olšany
or go back to the lake where we first met.
You might not come, not swim towards me
spouting water like a porpoise, drenching me
with elder-petals; might have joined a boat to Pec
met up with friends, be drinking Pilsner in a pub
have forgotten all about me.
I can see skin on toadstools harden, split
azalea buds loosen and open.
The gate is stiff, the metal bucket that props it shut
stuck into mud. You went off in a rush, packing
papers and books, cries of children in the yard
the sky quite grey. Trees were luminous those days
the silver birch wept when you left.
In the city you might have been woken at dawn
and taken to Bartolomějská.
I will go to the bridge and wait for you.