MRS. MOUNTER CIRCA.1914
You have seen them come and go: the salesmen,
stevedores, undergraduates and tinkers,
lorn veterans of Omdurman and Colenso,
the struggling artist with his curious hours;
all passing through the widow’s breach of spare
room. Your years lived impasto – caked-on,
palpable as Sunday Best – are rendered boldly,
dealing only in certainty, creed and nation,
dealing solidly in bricks and mortar
and the definite vertical of the doorway
that frames you as you sit, impassive
as the teapot, immovable as the rent.
Outside the world turns to mud, feeds its sons
to fire and lead and names you will hear
for the first time: Passchendaele, Somme, Ypres, Mons….
Martin Malone lives in north-east Scotland. He has published two poetry
collections: The Waiting Hillside (Templar, 2011) and Cur (Shoestring, 2015). His Great War-related third collection, The Unreturning is forthcoming. In addition, he has published three pamphlets: 17 Landscapes (Bluegate Books),
Prodigals (The Black Light Engine Room) and Mr. Willett’s Summertime (Poetry Salzburg). Poems from these and his other work have been published in a variety of journals; such as Stand, Strix, Poetry Ireland Review, Acumen, Agenda, Poetry Salzburg Review, Long Poem Magazine, Magma, The Moth, Gutter,
Butcher’s Dog, Under The Radar, Lighthouse and Bare Fiction. He reviews for The Interpreter’s House, Stand, Causeway/ Cabhsair and Poetry Ireland Review. An Associate Teaching Fellow in Creative Writing at Aberdeen University, he has a PhD in poetry from Sheffield University.