Kate Ennals is a prize-winning poet and writer and has published poems and short stories in a range of literary and on-line journals (Crannog, Skylight 47, Honest Ulsterman, The Moth, Anomaly, Bangor Literary Journal, Boyne Berries, North West Words, The Blue Nib, Dodging the Rain, The Ogham Stone, plus). Her first collection of poetry At The Edge was published in 2015. Her second collection, Threads, was published in April 2018. She has lived in Ireland for 25 years and runs poetry and writing workshops in County Cavan. Kate also runs At The Edge, Cavan, a literary reading evening, funded by the Cavan Arts Office. Her blog can be found at kateennals.com
Dandelion Drips the Colour of Blackberries.
A wavering line of purple drips, serrated at the edges, splash across the tiled kitchen floor. The round shape reminds me of dandelion heads. I follow them into the utility room where an opaque plastic barrel of fermenting blackberry wine is prattling. I can hear the bloop bloop of the bubbles on its surface. On the floor, two more stains, thicker, like blood clots, lead into the garage.
In the garage are three cardboard boxes full of empty wine bottles. They stand alongside rabbit eared black plastic bags full of God knows what. There are leaning tower of Pisa piles of newspapers (I am careful not to touch). Beside a dusty 5 litre tin of Midnight Moon Dulux paint sits your old Gladstone Bag, its two sides gaping open, as if about to give birth. Its empty.
The garage door is propped open by a broomstick, exposing our messy entrails to the street. Outside, in the square of blue and white light, the world looks pristine. The neighbour’s pink cherry blossom across the road dances in the breeze. The air is thick with fresh and petals. I scrabble over our broken lawnmower wreathed in strands of dead grass, step over a rusted saw, its smirk full of rotted teeth, and take away the broom propping open the garage door. It slams down with a crash, making my heart and stomach leap. It is dark. Fresh gone. The smell of diesel, coal, and fermenting wine are almost overpowering.
A creak startles me. I turn around and, in the gloom, see the folding stairs to the attic. I see your walking boots, laces untied. I am surprised. You don’t often wear boots. You are a slipper man. Above the boots are your trouser legs, hitched above your white bony ankles, then your old purple jumper over which hangs your balding head. Your flaccid neck is necklaced in orange nylon rope. You stare down, grinning inanely. A purple dandelion spills from your mouth. I rush forward. I hear the crash of newspapers. I swear at the mess. At the bottom of the steps, I take your ankle. It is cold and clammy, yet soft and delicate. Dandelion tears flow my down my cheeks. Fuck you. I shut my eyes tight, sink to my knees. This fucking garage will have to be cleared out. Thank God.
© 2020 Kate Ennals