Small Comforts. A poem by Fiona Perry

While the streetlamps are still shining, I lift the covered
Mixing bowl of bread dough out of the airing cupboard
And find its bloated surface covered in small craters
Like holes drilled into soil for the planting Spring bulbs
I stare at it for a moment, as if I can decode it, this random
Formation of dots, and in the tingling morning air, I think
Of my teenage son, the pencil marks on the wall downstairs
Charting his fast growth, the newly appeared dark fuzz on
His upper lip. I think I trained myself to pay attention to
These small things during times of heartbreak. The big things
Too colossal to contemplate. So when I conjure an image of
Expanding dough or sit on daughter’s bed to fixate on the
Bursting cherry blossom outside her window I know I am
Doing what is needed, stopping to listen to the world
Noticing all of this startling abundance that never sleeps.


Fiona’s short stories and poetry have been published in Bold + Italic, Skylight47, The Lighthouse Journal, Into The Void, Dodging The Rain and A New Ulster among many other journals and anthologies. In 2014 and 2015 her short fiction was shortlisted for the Morrison Mentoring Prize (Australia). Her poem, “Róisín Raharuhi” was selected as part of the Labelit project for National Poetry Day (Ireland) 2019.

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