A poem by Angela France

The Visit

Brown is the colour of waiting; a wainscot in a dingy room,
straight-backed chairs against the wall, tweed coats

on old women whose felt hats nod in approval and tilt
towards each other. They lean together to whisper

lineage, connections; which daughter, whose son, what cousin
is parent to the child who holds her grandmother’s hand

as she’s led through to the inner room. Beyond the door,
an old man leans from a narrow bed and the colours of dying

are yellow and white. A sheet winds round him, rumples
to leave a scrawny leg exposed, jaundiced against the linen

and his stained beard quivers as he mumbles over the bowl
held by a shadowy woman who counts his golden breaths.
(First Prize, The Lightship Poetry Competition, 2011 and forthcoming in Hide, Nine Arches Press, March 2013)
Angela France has had poems published in many of the leading journals, in the UK and abroad and has been anthologised a number of times. She has an MA from the University of Gloucestershire and is studying for a PhD. Her publications include Occupation (Ragged Raven Press, 2009), Lessons in Mallemaroking (Nine Arches Press, 2011) and her new collection, Hide (Nine Arches Press) due March 2013. Angela is features editor of Iota and runs a monthly poetry cafe, Buzzwords.