Like dublin by DS Maolalai

under the boiling pot
dropped leaves
smolder; the top of a litterbin
filled with cigarettes
and reducing to soup
on a dry afternoon. summer,
full of that smoky air
and missing fire. those little pops and cracks
like walking barefoot
and stepping on crisp packets. like dublin;
walking up o’connell street
while the sun shines
and everyone dresses
comfortably. men in shorts, t-shirts
and football jerseys
sliding over chests and bellies
as if loose water
were tumbling on rocks.
women too;
those airy dresses,
showing more of their legs
than the men even. sunglasses all over,
black as burned vegetables. earth slipping, filling with scent
and a hot meat market. in the pot at home,
outside of the city,
vegetables boil among fistfuls of ham. the air is humid,
the windows shut, full of steam
and the smell of toasting broccoli.
at the kitchen table
I open my shirt down as far as the belly,
lean back, and remember walking
home.

DS Maolalai has been nominated for Best of the Web and twice for the Pushcart Prize. His poetry has been released in two collections, Love is Breaking Plates in the Garden” (Encircle Press, 2016) and “Sad Havoc Among the Birds” (Turas Press, 2019)

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