This poem is taken from Stand 218, 16(2) May - June 2018.

Richie McCaffery Three Poems

Your mother wants a garden full of flowers
but she hates moles and their hillocks
that punctuate the green lawn.

She gets a man in who tears them out crying
from the turf like little velvet mandrakes –
he likes to skewer them with a pitchfork.

But the moles turn the soil, the more moles
there are, the more flowers. She can’t see that.

Your mother wants you to be happy, but only
on her own terms. As your lover I know
my presence on her estate is like the moles –

I blindly followed my calling to be with you,
we dug down into each other’s being. I’d move
the earth for you but I’m not going anywhere.

The whetstone
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