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2 poems by Jennie Farley


The feeling you get when you open your curtains

onto the sunshine of a childhood morning,

or as you pass a lighted window at dusk

and see a family having their supper,

when in town on a crowded street you keep

thinking you’ve seen a long dead friend.

As you wave goodbye to a leaving train,

or are reminded of the warm biscuity smell

of your old spaniel’s ears. It’s that moment

you recall your Dad’s tartan dressing gown

but not the sound of his voice, or whenever

you hear the sobbing tones of a saxophone.

It’s the feeling that comes when you notice

your hands have turned into your mother’s.

My Motorcycle Diary

In the days when I slept beneath

the intense gaze of Che Guevara

and we all wore black berets

I fell in love with a boy

who owned a motor cycle.

Windblown hair, sunglasses.

Why aren’t you wearing your coat?

And be sure to get home in time for tea!

I closed my ears to my mother’s

nagging as we roared across Market Square

along Bridge Street and out of town

toward Cuba, the Revolution, and glory.


Jennie Farley is a published poet, workshop leader and teacher living

in Cheltenham. Her work has featured in magazines including Prole,

Under the Radar, The Interpreter’s House, and been performed at

festivals. Her first collection was Her Grandmother Skating(Indigo Dreams

Publishing 2016) followed by Hex (IDP 2018). She has just completed a

pamphlet The Gymslip Girls.


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