The French Bearer
Oblique pockets flatter the frame and there are all the attendant mysteries—
basting and binding and collar wings even darts—
oh, there are the organdies, brocades chintz and poplin, chenille and whipcord;
like a lady of our mothers’ era she bore an easy knowledge of these.
In me she saw blue wings interspersed with northern spruce as though, through pure ignorance, I could weave these.
Her cities were bent and lovely, simmering— so many times I should have carried them
to the print shop before now. So many times before now.
Roller-coastering through Value Village we laughed like gulls
objects bright with potential aisles tipped precipitously inward
causing her to fly out, leaving her red basket potpourri jars, fringed shade and gathered tunic.
Raven wings beat the rain-heavy sky—I open my eyes to see that my tree is full of songbirds knocking out seeds.
A bespoke piece that reveals age only at the end of a rich and weary life—
draw an adamant thistle flower seamlessly overlaid on earth that melts in your mouth
it will taste bitter, then sweet— this is her soul
a trove of thimbles and bits silk and sharp needles.
She sends me a valentine that says we’ll be together no matter where life takes us;
she told Mum that to die is fine just enter a dream—and I’ll meet you there—
Maybe we shouldn’t say these things I begin to feel ill too, sister.
She looks at the whole of it: candour and starlings, and she knows the French Bearer is a special button, found behind the fly.