Eliza Wyatt


Quarrelled over by five kids
           An upright grey shape
                  Worn down to deformity
                        With stumps instead of feet                     
Bruggsey was a gift from a Dad gone to prison

News, newspapers a constant threat
                Noises at night shook the bed
                      Kissed goodbye many times 
                           Postage stamps scorned 
Mam proudly showed us the headlines

Busy wiping steam from painted walls
                  The kettle always on the boil
                           We ate warm jam butties
                                On the cold walk to school
earless Bruggsey left behind in a blanket 

One by one we left for jobs a ways from home
                  Foreign welcomes on our tongues
                       Slow to hear of those who were gone
                           From a country with no flag we owned
 Bruggsey’s remains buried in the rich dark soil 



         under the sun of Tuscany

          lupins are in bloom

                                     yellow heather poppies

                                      grown for catching frogs


        are heard but in the distance

                                      summer hills are dreaming 

                                    sweet peas unfurl their pods

                                       for bees to visit them 


        can they come up the hill to kill then?

                                        Fields are soft

                                        doves sound out a blessing

                                     young girls walk to the church

Ave Maria

         echoes in thin uncertain singing

                                        there’s to be a wedding

                                         quick before the army comes

                                         for unbowed peasant ones


         heaped on the road have to be buried

                                         fathers lovers brothers sons

                                         all the men

                                         shot dead

Jesus Mary and Joseph

                                     forgive them and they did

                                     twenty, thirty, forty

                                         fifty years later a marker

Ave Maria 

         singing is heard in the church 

                                      soprano voices                                           

                                          high in the hills of Tuscany

                                          there’s to be a wedding 

Eliza Wyatt is an award winning playwright and has written one novel, Annabel Langoni. Her poems have been set to music by Paul Ch

Flights, Issue Five, June 2022