Stone-faced in the small, square Ford that smells
of oil and damp, my father’s bucking through the gears
without the aid of synchromesh. His cactus arm sticks out
to show we’re turning right, his sleeve soaked through with rain.
Under the tartan blanket in the back I make a world where I
can be The Lady of Shalott, the windscreen-wipers slowing
as we climb each hill, my mother granting favours –
single squares of Fruit-and-Nut.
How to peel a rutabaga
the armadillo skin
that sweet flesh
the right word
The Green Denby Jug
sits on top
of the un-tuned piano
handle akimbo on one full hip.
Unused all year,
in August it will bloom
backlit by my father’s pride.
I sit on the floor and stare
at the green denby jug;
an empty vessel,
Hilary Hares lives in Farnham, Surrey and spent 27 years using the power of words to raise money for charity. She has a BA in Creative Writing from the University of Winchester and an MA in Poetry from Manchester Metropolitan University. She is published in a number of magazines and anthologies and is currently working on a memoir sequence entitled ‘Re-inventing the Red Queen’.