Christmas card list

I’m remembering my mothers Christmas Card list.

Written in her hand, in writing shaped

By chalk on a blackboard, rounded and clear

For children to read. Names harvested from a past.

Beardsworth Auld, Charles somewhere in the east

Who sent silk scarfs, who I never met, now deceased.


She’d get out the list put away last year

In a manila folder with remainder cards

With Basildon Bond paper and her pen,

And spread them on the dining room table.

Some years, some names crossed out,

Odd names added,  the original remained.

Dyllis, Clarice, Hilda, Pat Raine


The curl of smoke from a silk cut cigarette

Head inclined, a young fey look on her face,

Exhaling, as if remembering the time and place

Where their lives combined, Germany, or Hull

In the drawing room of Quebec Road.

Helen and Ian, 4 The Quay, Isle of Sky.


Somewhere in storage container, dormant

These many years, that manila folder lies,

While I make a list, my head inclined

Harvesting from an overlapping past

Vijay, Varsha, Bharat, Dr Jain

Pat Raine, 4 The Paddock, Cottingham



Christmas Card List

December 2011






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