John Sawkins


She's a big hug of a girl
(Don't giggle, Christina)
a full-grown woman of thirty-five
who looks much younger
because of the round childlike face
set above the column of the neck
and the bold Junoesque breasts;

her speech is usually emphatic,
often caustic, sometimes drastic,
driven by an active intelligence,
yet it can be tender end discrete
and in a sudden silence
can be traced an appeal
that is almost effaced
by the rigour of circumstance;

her hands that have to work so hard
to make harsh things clean
are small and delicate
and I watch fascinated
as each curled finger
settles to repose
in her trousered lap;

unused to such close attention
her soft cheek loses its pallor
her mouth widens and now
she has a warmth about her
so that just to be near her
makes me happy.



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