Now he is here
Issue Five & Poetry

Now He is Here

By Denise O’Hagan

I tread between slabs of stone
shining like the underbellies of giant bugs
in the shimmering light
of an autumn afternoon
and think that this was just
the sort of day he would have loved.

He used to eat olives
and anchovies
and sardines
and now he is here.

He used to drink
his coffee espresso
standing up at a bar
and now he is

He was
a quiet man
a reserved man
he did not subscribe
to the confessional age
but rather to an older European formality
like his suits, his polished shoes
and his ability to listen
and now he

I jam the bottlebrush
into granite urns
spots of blood
speckling my knuckles


Artwork by Jackie Benney. Published with permission of the artist.