home> poets> Myra Schneider

about Myra Schneider       more poems           Members’ Events Listing       Shop Online

last update:

6th Jul 10

Myra Schneider photo e-mail Myra
Myra’s website

poetry favourites:
Myra at Desperado Literature
 
SecondLightLive
 

The Poetry School
 

Poetry East Interview at YouTube

 

and in the shop…
publications –  
“Persephone in Finsbury Park”
Second Light Publications (2016);
 
“The Door to Colour” (2013)
and
“Circling the Core” (2008),
Enitharmon Press;
 
“Writing Your Self”
with John Killick
Continnuum Books (2009);
 
“Becoming”
Second Light Publications (2007)
 
“Writing My Way Through Cancer”
Jessica Kingsley (2003)
 
 
more from Enitharmon:
“Multiplying the Moon”
 
“Insisting on Yellow”
 
“The Panic Bird”
 
“Exits”
 
“Cathedral of Birds”
 
“Cat Therapy”
 
“Crossing Point”

 

 

 

Paula’s Bowl
     for Erwin and in memory of Paula Schneider, my mother-in-law

The higgle of packets, purple-lidded canisters of pasta,
pumpkin seeds, oatcakes and the tiger-faced biscuit tin
on our larder’s lowest shelf are queened by the large bowl
 
Paula made. With its not quite symmetric sides, a patterning
of leafiness on earthbrown and bright yellow trunks it’s cousin
to bowls in Matisse paintings, carries the kiss of Picasso
 
and our daily bread. If Paula had seen the muddle
around it – she who brought imagination and practicality
to every shelf, wall and cranny of her house in Stamford Hill –
 
she’d have bubbled with ideas for transforming the larder
and our home, built the extension we’d half-envisaged
but shied away from. What she couldn’t mould was her own life.
 
The bowl goes deep but not deep enough to hold everything
she lost: her art school place under Kokoshka – in 1919
life in Vienna was as insecure as skating on thin ice;
 
the portfolio of paintings she once showed to her children –
orange women with arms flung out, meadows glorious
with flowers and grasses; her home; her parents and sister
 
when she fled from Hitler to England. The spacious bowl,
its mazurka leaves, insect-dot blossom, tell the joy she felt
as a potter but as I gaze at the cool of the varnished interior
 
it remains silent as sealed lips, doesn’t whisper a word
of her sharp disappointment that little of her work sold.
In our house terracotta children in bell skirts are dancing
 
round a maypole. Blue florets speckle the long white dress
of a figure sitting on the ground, candleholders flower
on her head, hands, outstretched feet. A finger-thin dog
 
sniffs at a mottled triangular plate. Here, she’s still alive
but every time I take bread from her bowl I remember
what was given, what was snatched out of her reach.

Myra Schneider

in collection, Circling The Core, 2008,
Enitharmon Press, ISBN 978-1-904634-66-9