• Vol. 05
  • Chapter 07
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Cleanliness, Mummy says, is next to Godliness.
Today the water’s cool as eels,
clear as water in Dick Brook as skies were
yesterday. Until she drops the soap. And then
as if by magic, clouds appear around my feet.
It tickles when she cleans between my toes
and as the water swirls, I think of when my daddy held me high above the shallows where crayfish hide
between the alder roots, little caves where shale becomes
a home for cadis worms and trout. And as I watch the ripples
in my fennel-scented bowl, its little waves bring back
a tide of rock pools garneted with sea anemones
swaying green with water weed; now you see it
now you don't, a shrimp-crowd ghosting
through its crazy razzmatazz; razor fish; my footprints
in the sand erased by warm sea breezes. Cool white foam
disperses while my mother’s hands
rinse my ankles as this morning's rain pools
across the window-sill.
Gathers. Gushes. Lost among forgetmenots.