Markings 34 - On Collecting Dickens


Embroidery by Olive Ruth Sherwin - c. 1950s

On Collecting Dickens

Grandmother got them all by slow degrees

after the war on a pension

from book clearance tables at Myers

for sixpence and a shilling at the Argonaut now gone

under and they were for her a constant source of coruscation

beneath their muted cloth covers of red and blue and green

moving in and out of them with a companion

ease and she could have been

any one of a dozen characters yet not the least herself

seeking out their peculiar company down those long

days of sickness up half

the night through all the years of separation

now they line one shelf of mine and wait as comforter

for some time tired soul to come to them like hers.

Jeff Guess

Published: POETRY AUSTRALIA

©Jeff Guess 2017

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