Monday, October 31, 2016

In Guernsey where the ghost, a poem by Mary M. Brown

In Guernsey where the ghost

of Victor Hugo rides the narrow streets
            like a roller coaster, we go to Eucharist

at the old Town Church of St. Peter
             Port, discover that the Very Reverend

            Canon is retiring soon, the after-service
cookies and tea designed to mark the day

                      in an understated way. We are
welcomed, but reluctant to intrude. Later

            we learn that Hauteville House is closed
                        today, only a placard outside the modest

            island home where Hugo wrote. There
the same deep violet wisteria that we noticed

climbing the stone of the great church
            shrieks with delight, falls fast and violent

from the locked iron gate


                      —by Mary M. Brown


Bio: Mary M. Brown lives and writes in Anderson, Indiana, a Hoosier not by birth but by long residence and disposition. She taught literature and creative writing at Indiana Wesleyan for many years. Her work appears on the Poetry Foundation and the American Life in Poetry websites and has been published recently in Christian Century, The Cresset, Quiddity, and Justice Journal.


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