Tuesday, 5 January 2016

A poem by Jessica Mookherjee


There is photographic evidence
of the exact time she shifted her gaze,
when her eyes went out of focus.
The pictures show me growing bigger,
in pigtails, often alone,
a snap of a girl with her hand on her mother's
shoulder, like a Victorian husband.
I passed on my birthright to all those unborn
boys, soothed her worried forehead,
cut out coupons in newspapers for amulets,
put them in father's hand - so he could keep
us safe. Stood behind my mother as she prayed
at the front door, led her to the kitchen,
made sure she looked at the babies
there is evidence of her holding them,
keeping them close,
there is no photograph of me climbing stairs
two at a time, no evidence that I tried not
to slip and break my neck.

Jess is a poet from Kent and has been published recently in Prole, Antiphon, Poetry Shed, Ink, Sweat & Tears, Agenda, Interpreter's House and the Journal. 

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