Here in the Indian foothills,
I share a house with a man from Greece
who speaks no English perfectly,
disappears for days on a motorbike,
leaves his laundry on the low make-shift line,
grieving an absent sun.
Side by side they hang: his shirt, my summer dress
as if they know each other well
and when he returns, smelling of engine oil,
monsoon, rolled brown cigarettes,
we have no formal language
to share our separate joy.
Drip-drip on the balcony,
a queer, white pool gathers below.
He holds at a sleeve, looks to sky.
I open my palm for signs of rain.
Annemarie Ní Chuireann is from the Gaeltacht in Donegal. She is a graduate of the M.Phil in Creative Writing programme at the Oscar Wilde Centre, Trinity College Dublin. Her poems have been published widely in Ireland and abroad. She lives in Dublin.