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Tinfoil (poem) - Doireann Ní Ghríofa - Ireland - Poetry International

 
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Scragall Stáin
scrolla fada airgid
srianta

i ngéibheann
an chófra,

ceangailte
i rannóir cairtchláir

le lann fhiaclach
a sracann as

chun béal-béasaí
a chur ar bhabhlaí

agus ar phrócaí
an chuisneora —

saol beag,
bocht.

D’fhuasclóinn é, an scragall stáin. Dhéanfainn
abhainn as, lí mhín liath scaoilte timpeall an tí.

Ag barr sléibhe an staighre, d'éireodh an fhoinse
i nGuagán Barra, agus as sin, scaoilfinn cláideach

uiscí geala na Laoi chun sníomh síos le fána,
ribín liath ag rith tríd an halla, faoi dhroichead an toilg,

scáileanna bric rua agus bradáin ag snámh
faoin duileasc inti. Ar oíche ghealaí, sheasfadh

fear ar an mbruach lena mhac, soilse a sopóga
ag cíoradh an uisce. Nuair a chogródh an buachaill

"A thiarcais, tá an abhainn chomh slíomach le scragall stáin,"
chuirfeadh a athair méar lena bheola agus roghnódh sé duán.

Leanfadh na huiscí uathu, ag coradh timpeall na ndoirse
go cathair na cistine. Le faí agus fáir na bhfaoileán thairsti,

scaoilfinn uiscí sciobtha a dhéanfadh oileáin de chosa boird
agus bruacha de bhallaí, a chuirfeadh glór na habhann

ag canadh faoi thóchair na gcófraí, abhainn chathrach
déanta di, breac le scáileanna dorcha lannacha.

Chuirfinn rón aonair ar strae inti agus cailín óg rua
an t-aon duine amháin a d'fheicfeadh é.

Tharraingeoinn an abhainn le hualach a scéalta uile
ina diaidh agus lúbfainn í siar chugam.

Craptha,
sractha,

cúlaithe,
d'fhillfinn

í ar ais
sa chófra

arís.
Tinfoil
o aluminium roll,
o silver scroll

confined in
this cupboard,

bound in cardboard,
restrained behind

a jagged blade that tears
lengths away to mute

the bowls and
jars of the fridge —

o small,
spare life.

I would free it, the tinfoil. I’d lift it from its cabinet and make
a river of it, a smooth, grey sheen released through the house.

At the summit of the stairs, the source would spurt up
from Gougane Barra, setting a mountain stream to gush, and I’d lift it

and give it a push, I’d let the bright waters of the Lee flow down
the slope, to run a silver ribbon through the hall. Under the bridge

of a couch, I’d watch shadows of salmon and brown trout swim in
and out of riverweed. On a moonlit night, a man might stand there

with his son, the light of their torches poaching the waters. If the child
whispered “Oh look, the river’s smooth as tin foil!” his father 

would hush him quickly, finger to lip, and turn to choose a hook.
The waters would surge onwards, swirling under doors to the city

-kitchen. Where gulls screech and shriek high, I would thrust swifter
currents that’d make islands of table legs and riverbanks of walls.

I’d give the river a voice to hum through the culverts that run under
cupboards, making of itself a lilting city song, its waters speckled

with gloom-shadows of mullet. I would put a single seal there,
lost, and make a red-haired girl the only person who’d see him.

I would tug that river back, then, the weight of all its stories
dragging after it, and haul it in loud armfuls all the way back to me.

Shrunken, 
crumpled,

torn, I’d
fold it, then,

and close
it back in 

its press
again.