Storying Sheffield

New Year

Many thanks to Shirin Teifouri for sharing this poem.

New Year
I am travelling from England to motherland to stare
at my mother’s vanishing point into the new year,
as far back as I remember
I was always late for everything
this December, her new knitted coat
I bought from M & S arrived after her death,
she knitted a lot when I was a child, sometimes I thought
she replicated herself–or created me?–
in her lace, sometimes you could trace
how insecure fingers invaded the stitches
weaving in and out, holes escaped her detached eyes
and out of the long cold nights her creation
conjured like a blank paper chewed by a sly mouse
lurking in the corner of the house,
didn’t she hear silent cries,
or they were beyond her imagination?
I look down at the world beneath me, in a dark ocean
the remains of a drowned childhood still hope to be rescued,
I miss the chance to open the seatbelt,
meal is abandoned, red lipstick smiles: ‘Coffee madam?’
I land in Iran, Tehran, hometown
to let memories claim their own lives
and unravel the ties I am deeply hurt by
It’s new year and I am too late
to get over an unconditional love.