“My grandfather's hand opens and there is a sky inside.”
– from The Sky Inside, Sean Thomas Dougherty
i never met you. you, from whom i inherited my
left eye. “when you're tired your left eyelid droops just like your grandfather's,”
ma tells me. you grew sunflowers with your bare hand.
i never saw them, but each time one opens
i wonder if you do too. i wonder if you still tend gardens and
if people still come from streets away to buy your flowers, there
wherever it is
you went to, after they carried your body out of 41 athlone street on a
september morning in 1983. i wonder if you heard my scream and if the sky
shook a little at the spilling sunflowers on my inside.
Unpublished poem, ? Toni Stuart 2017, used by permission of the author.