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  • Writer's pictureafricmcglinchey

There is only time for this

Updated: Jul 6, 2022


I’m stuck, like a windless cloud,

as uninspired as my thin, uncut, uncoloured hair.

For now, all I can do

is mourn the loss of our Eavan Boland.

He’s hauled the vacuum cleaner up the stairs

and the rest is up to me. I could go out,

get Vitamin D. But the robin’s perching

on the stone swan, so I figure the garden

is his domain for the moment.

Stare at the screen instead, fingering

the goose-bumps rising up on my nape.

In the workshop now, Michael’s charring

his eleventh wooden carving, a subconscious

odyssey, which is coming to represent a hazardous

waste facility, or the state of his teeth.

No dentist for the duration. Doing, he says,

keeps me from fixing on the pain. And I know

it’ll distract me, too, from trawling through

the latest updates. I decide to grab a bite

for energy first. But we’ve run out of bread

and there’s no more chocolate. Just a pair

of speckled bananas in the table bowl on the brink

of a journey to the bin for organic waste.

So I take the sorry-looking fruit into the kitchen,

cleaving to each other like the couple

in Eavan’s Quarantine, rummage

for coconut oil and nuts and the rest,

and hey presto, after thirty

minutes or so, a banana loaf.

Afric McGlinchey

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