Sunday Dinner by Gareth Culshaw

I hear her downstairs, plate spinning a chicken dinner on her head.
Pots pang against each other as they’re drawn from the cupboard.
A blue sky serves us sunlight through dust stained windows.
The dog lies in her dog setting. A cat pauses its life on the stairs.
I enter a kitchen that is a science lab of dinner making. Mint sauce
squats beside table salt, gravy, pot-holes yesterday’s mug.
Steam fogs out of her mouth as she asks me how much broccoli I want.
I nod with a betting man slowness. Hear a jackdaw bark somewhere.
Feel the gap in our lives as two passing seasons outside the window.
Carrots become orange fence posts, cauliflowers cloud my plate,
spuds tumble from a colander as I pour lemonade into a glass.
We sit with a television playing in our heads. Catch words
in between teeth we wear away each summer on ice cream.
The sofa keeps us bus-quiet, food fills up what has been lost.
A shade falls out of a tree that stands behind a wall, paints over
smiles we once grew in walks around the coast. The clock spins
our earth as it hangs on the wall as a liquid calendar. I dive my fork
into the skull of a roast potato feel quilt-soft summer inside
this living room. Catch her years fading onto her gravy stained plate.

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Gareth lives in Wales. His first collection came out in 2018 by Futurecycle called The Miner. In 2020, his second collection, A Bard's View is now released. He is an MA student at Manchester Met. He has been published in 150 places across the UK & USA. Gareth won his first poetry competition in 2019 at the RS Thomas Festival and has also been nominated for Best of the Net.

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