Magnolia in March

Magnolia in March

*

Gold under my tree:
daffodils, minted sunlight.
No gold in the sky.

*

Purple stars appear
beneath the bedroom window:
little sky on earth.

*

The bare black branches
hold a round yellow lantern:
the rising full moon.

*

Christina Egan © 2005/2016

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The Tea Turned Cold – VII

Please note the seventh part of an essay at POLITICS .

The Tea Turned Cold in the Cup,

or, Why Women’s Work is No Work

VII.

There are many impressive novels about humble women’s lives in former times, written both at the time and since, written by both women and men. Thomas Hardy’s Tess, a farmhand, toils in the field as if in a chain gang; Elizabeth Gaskell’s Mary Barton, a seamstress, languishes at the workshop into the night; Claire Etcherellli’s Elise, a factory worker, rushes and sweats at the conveyor belt.

They all get exploited; they all get exhausted. Yet none of these women seems to wash any sheets by hand on top of that; none of them is seen heaving pots of stew around; none of them does as much as sweeping the floor of her dwelling. When a girl has a baby, someone has to care for it, but no one seems to boil and mash food or soak and scrub linen for it. It all gets done by itself.

It all gets done magically. It all gets done in the wings. The never-ending chores are performed by invisible girls and women; by hands which get worn over the years without ever receiving a penny in return; by hands presumably too busy to drink the cup of tea turning cold in the cup.

Read more here.

Woman with apron filling plates with roast and many different vegetables.Woman worker “during her “time off”:
“not working”  while cooking
&”not working” while writing.
Photograph: Christina Egan © 2015.

Westminster Bridge, Mitte März

Westminster Bridge, Mitte März

Im Überfluß hingeschüttet, schimmernd
und erstmals wieder erquickend
der Sonnenschein, und schon erstreckt sich
aus silbernen Plättchen gehämmert
das Straßenpflaster, entrollt sich
die hellblaue Teppichbahn
des Stromes, schon stemmen sich,
stumme starke Löwenflanken,
die Brückenpfeiler empor, ragen
lotrecht die Honigwaben
der Sandsteinfassaden, rasselt
endlos das bunte Geröll
der Menschenmassen vorüber…

Und unabwendbar naht sich
die Machtergreifung des Lichtes.

Christina Egan © 2014


 

The rhythmic stream of words recreates an everyday and vibrating scene: the enlivening flow of the spring sunshine; the rolling-out of a silver carpet and a blue carpet — Westminster Bridge and the River Thames; an avalanche of colourful boulders or pebbles people from all over the world; and the upward pull of the bridge pillars and mighty buildings — the Houses of Parliament.

La veille / Nightwatch

La veille

Quelqu’un compte pour nous
les heures sans sommeil,
quelqu’un garde pour nous
les fleurs sans pareil.

Quelqu’un compte toujours
les larmes sans oreille,
quelqu’un garde toujours
les charmes de la veille…

Christina Egan © 2012

Huge liturgical book with very large writing and music, richly illuminated

Nightwatch

Someone counts, rest assured,
inconsolable hours,
keeps all prayers secured,
incomparable flowers.

Someone counts day and night
tears unseen and unheard,
guards the circle of light
round a mind deeply stirred…

Christina Egan © 2016


I was thinking of angels or saints when I wrote these lines (twice, in French and in English); other humans might prefer to think of spirits or the only God. I hope there is no one on earth who has no comfort of this sort at all!


Photograph by ignis, via Wikimedia Commons [GFDL, CC-BY-SA-3.0  or CC BY-SA 2.5-2.0-1.0].