Gypsy Nanna King

 A prettiness that was plain beauty

till the flowering season wilted.

But it didn’t matter

that your skin grew parched

and stretched and tanned

and pounced and quilted

by the sunray pleat of wrinkles.

If there was room for flounces or a gem

a turn of lace, a froth of sequinned flair

a dotting of French knots on

skin, a surface brown and bare,

for a splash of gold and crystal

every hued

rainbow stain upon the crepey chest

that shadowed under.

From where bubbled

the fag corrupted voice

as low as August thunder.

◄ Summer of Love

The Hope Chest ►


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Elaine Booth

Fri 8th Apr 2011 21:18

Love the language here Rachel. "From where bubbled / the fag corrupted voice / as low as August thunder" is wonderful. A truly new and original phrase. X

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Thu 7th Apr 2011 19:59

A joy to read Rachel - well done x

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Thu 7th Apr 2011 16:05

I've enjoyed reading this one too Rachel. It's classy poetry. The ending is brill cos the voice that goes with such a character is totally unexpected - much like August thunder, I suppose! x

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Rachel McGladdery

Thu 7th Apr 2011 06:34

Thanks Greg, that is a truly lovely comment x

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Greg Freeman

Wed 6th Apr 2011 22:21

"As low as August thunder" is a killer last line, Rach. Appreciated the technique going on with words like wilted and quilted. But it's more than just technique: rich language, real warmth.

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Rachel McGladdery

Wed 6th Apr 2011 21:24

Oops sorry Ann, didn't spot your comment there, thanks too, she had a real smoker's voice, raspy but warm xxx

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Rachel McGladdery

Wed 6th Apr 2011 21:23

Thanks Francine, she wasn't at all mysterious really, just a very sun-leathery, homely, religious nanna. She died when I was 18 and though she was only in her early 60s was so wrinkly she looked like she'd been baked! she was lovely though. This is part of a bigger poem with some stuff about how she selflessly lived for her husband and children...guess the skin is where the similarity ends lol! :) xxx

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Ann Foxglove

Wed 6th Apr 2011 21:19

Lovely stiff - I love the August thunder!xx

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Wed 6th Apr 2011 21:00

I really enjoyed reading this, Rachel... for the vivid images.
You make her sound fascinating and mysterious!

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Andy N

Wed 6th Apr 2011 13:57

really enjoyed the full piece, rachel but the last line was particularly cool.. top stuff x

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Rachel McGladdery

Wed 6th Apr 2011 13:22

Thanks Rachel, :) x

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Rachel Bond

Wed 6th Apr 2011 11:09

this is beautifully written, in a language rich and tangible x

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