Ode to federica lorca

By Hanna Hamida Hughes

At the bottom of the well
I found your heart
In a box of tarnished silver
With a rusted lock.


Behind the statue of a saint
I found the key
Hidden in a burnished oyster
With a dull pearl.


We took away the swords that skewered your heart
And laid it down in the hyacinth bed.
In the dew of the morning it sang
And the flowers cried.


The afternoon came running
And your heart took root
And sprouted a silver birch
Bearing a garland of lilies.


Your heart sang still as evening came
And the birch tree grew.
An old woman brought an altar
And played her guitar to your hymn.


All roads lead past the tree
And the pilgrims left oranges in your honour
So the hungry could eat
And they sang with your heart


Until just before dawn, when, satisfied
The pilgrims moved on and
The old woman laid down her guitar
Leaving the poet’s-tree on a hillside
To watch the red sun rise.

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© Helicon Magazine 2019

University of Bristol