Nicola Daly

How We Lost Our God

It began with the pop of Papa`s gun.
Then there was the thud of the front door and Mama was gone.

Without warning our house stopped being a home.
Every morning after there was a cruel frost.
The pond emptied of fish.
The wine cellar decreased.

The sun stopped stroking our bones.
The wind refused to kiss our cheeks.

There were no more summers of fleshy peaches
or salty fingers from Pommes frites.

Saints days and birthdays melted away with December.
There was no laughter or frivolity.

The moon no longer held us in its grip.
We began to think of it as a swollen, maggot ridden apple
or a huge pumice stone hanging over our heads.

Without Mama we forgot to speak to God before we went to sleep.
We even gave up believing that somebody might save is from Papa
belching hot peppers in our face and crushing the breath from our chests.

For a time we looked to the stars but the stars hid until there were no longer
any stars to reach for or paper crowns to rest upon our heads
just mice with eager little eyes gnawing at the prayer books under our beds.

© Nicola Daly

 

An Inventory of the Curious Room He kept Us In.

The room was as tight as my bodice but as fragile as an egg.
Those four walls contained everything he had ever held dear.
There was one unicorn`s horn, a thousand of Mary Magdalene`s tears
and an earring made from his enemy`s yellowing tooth.

On the display there was the blunt bones and fierce breath of mythical creatures.
The closet harboured the silver morph our Mama robed around her shoulders.
Nightly the bottled song of the hummingbird could be heard.

This was a room in a house that at night was like the corner of a forest.
We slept in a bed that ached with cold in a street we didn`t know.
A Street where there was no sun just the smell of offal and the barking of dogs.

© Nicola Daly