Poem by Pratibha Castle: ‘Write About Home’

Dublin, Home, House, Ireland, Europe
Write About Your Home.

She flushes at the triumph 
of a last full stop. About 
to serve the lunch, her father 
skims, his smile 
                     crumpling to a frown. Voice 

icicle strict, he charges her 
to rip the pages out, strike
through the paragraph under 
last week’s homework 
at the bottom of the page,
Miss Clarke’s well thought out, 
good work, 
                                         spangly gold star. 

A tale of the bedroom 
with the daisy papered walls 
they made her swap with daddy, 
for the dressing room by ma’s. 
Jock’s bark at the plop 
on the mat of envelopes: 
thick cream, brown, tissue thin 
the sky shade of her frock; 
stamps she pilfered from the bin: 
monkeys, exotic blossom, 
                                         the once a snake. 

Post her father tidies by 
the silver toast rack, pinch 
waist coffee pot, ironed 
copy of The Times, 
on the breakfast tray 
he hustles of a morning 
up to stooped Judge Droop, 
retired, and wheezing, 
                                                    still abed.

Of evening primrose spires,
their yellow hands bowling
towards the sun, cowering shut 
come cloud 
                                or blackbird evensong. 

No hint of tentacles that writhe at night 
from out the cupboard, drawer, 
beneath the bed to slink in dreams 
                                      inside the blankets.

Bio 2021:

Pratibha Castle, born in Dublin, now lives in West Sussex. She began writing on her mother’s death, graduating aged 60 from Chichester University with a first-class honours degree in English and Creative Writing, studying further on their Creative Writing MA. A Triptych of Birds and A Few Loose Feathers (Hedgehog Press), her award-winning debut pamphlet, publishes summer 2021. Her work appears in Agenda, Dreich, The HU, Blue Nib, Fragmented Voices, Saraswati, Reach, Words for the Wild, Bonnie’s Crew, Panoply, Poetry and All That Jazz, Fly on the Wall, Lothlorien Journal. Winner of the NADFAS poetry competition age range 13 – 17, 2009, she was Highly Commended in Binsted Arts, Sentinel Literary Journal Competitions 2021, Storytown 2020, and Hedgehog Press, Postcards from the Hedge: A Bestiary of the Night. She has been longlisted in competitions, including The Brian Dempsey Memorial. Anthologised, she reads regularly on Wilts Radio, The Poetry Place.

By davidlonan1

David writes poetry, short stories, and writings that'll make you think or laugh, provoking you to examine images in your mind. To submit poetry, photography, art, please send to feversofthemind@gmail.com. Twitter: @davidLOnan1 + @feversof Facebook: DavidLONan1

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