Chickenpox

Summer was the worst time to be sick, tucked up tight in bed, restrained by grandmother’s hospital corners, bullied by the clock’s resonant tick. The room was stifling, even the sticky Lucozade was too warm to fizz, and the fly too drowsy to buzz and batter against the window. Outside, neighbourhood children played, lawnmowers droned […]

Rossetti’s Harp Player

The harp is made to play laments, and her fingers pluck its strings mournfully in mellifluous torment. Notes spill like dawn birdsong from the instrument she clings, as if it were the first song the harp had learnt to sing. Her velvet gown is black as night, the harp of ebony made, but light shimmers […]