Anna Livia

She was a woman in water

collecting sweet wrappers.

Her hair the long sobs

of a drunk wandering home

in the small hours. Lost kisses

carved into her eyes. The floozy

in the jacuzzi, the whore

in the sewer. You had to

know her to make that rhyme.

None of those grey men in wigs

were so abused and slurred.

They stood around in solemn silence,

their crimes forgotten,

but she was closer to the streets,

the rebel songs my grandmother whistled

even when the words were banned.

They replaced her with a giant needle

pointing up to the future.

Sharp, unforgiving, uncomplicated.

Not a place where question marks

congregated but a story moved on.

What remains, what is removed.