HAND OF FATE 1963

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Poetry  |  House: Booksie Classic

Submitted: March 26, 2016

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Submitted: March 26, 2016

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Mary forks
in meat
from the pie
her mother'd made

her father is looking
at the letter
that arrived
from the school

her mother pours gravy
onto her plate

what's this about
you and that
Magdalene Murphy girl
being seen
in the bogs together
by the sisters?
He says stern featured
mouth open

we were talking

talking in
the fecking bog together?

The bog stalls
were all full up
apart from one
and so we went in together

and did what?
He says
staring at her
his blue eyes
sharp as pencils

talking just that
Mary says
her fork hanging
in her hand
in mid-air

so why go into
the bogs to talk
why not outside
in the playground
why the fecking bogs?

She looks at her mother
who looks away
as if she'd remembered
something important

thought it'd be
more private
for us to talk
Mary says

and you did
no business?
He says

business?
Da it's a fecking bog
not a shop
she replies

and one of the nuns
saw you there?
He says

she's always gawking
in the bogs
I think she has
a secret urge
Mary says

I won't have you
saying things
about the good sisters
he says

Mary eats the meat
on her fork
sorry didn't mean
to cast aspersion thingys
about them
she says
anxious he'd not
belt her one
eating as fast
as she can in case

he stares at her
if I hear about you
and the Murphy girl again
and stuff like this
I'll tan her arse
to the colour
of her Ma's jumper
you understand?

She nods
and swallows
yes I won't or we won't
she says
gazing at him
and watching his hand

no more of that
with her
he adds
he folds the letter
back in the envelope
and forks up
a piece of meat
and chews and looks
at his wife

Mary looks
at her plate
and the hand of fate.


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