By Rosanna Licari
Full of beautiful lyrical and narrative poems, this thought-provoking assortment explores numerous subject matters, together with the experience of belonging, the human , kinfolk, being a stranger, love and wish, and beginnings and endings. Divided into 3 sections delineating the author's preoccupations together with her relatives heritage in Europe, formative years, and the purchase and processing of expertise, this compilation—inspired via the poet’s mom, Sofia, who's the topic of numerous works—also bargains perception into lifestyles after immigration to Australia.
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Additional info for An Absence of Saints
My brother spots us, pulls up fast takes us to the cemetery. She wipes the gravestone arranges the flowers. Crows pick through the grass as father, her chauffeur, rests. indd 54 28/04/10 3:34 PM Sea urchins 1. My parents both smile. The Adriatic is chest high on my mother, and my father is holding me in one arm. In his other hand a spiny ball inches across his palm like a hunched cloud. 2. August in Kyoto I sit with my lover in a sushi bar and don’t know if I can swallow the soft green urchin steeped in algae, salt and sand.
And curled on top of each one, was a dragon. Night waters murmured and the dragons’ scales glistened. Moonlight was in their eyes. One whispered to me: they came from China, and I knew then they had to be mine. When the women had finished their coffee and we were about to leave, I picked up the slippers and hid them behind me. indd 40 keep them from harm as mother didn’t allow pets in the house. Mamma, I said. She turned and gave me a horrified look when she saw them in my hands. Then she was angry.
Nothing. Mother still tells me she regrets not putting an extra ‘s’ in my name. As if Rosanna wasn’t different enough. indd 44 28/04/10 3:34 PM Offerings My mother gives me a stiff look then mouths say you like them as her friend pulls the hand-me-downs out of the plastic bag: skirts hang over the knees necklines clutch at the throat, no boots or red bags, only stitched, zipped, buttoned cloth that hems my body, and my posture spells ingratitude to Mother. indd 45 28/04/10 3:34 PM His friend sang fuoco, fuochetto Father’s instruction to me was always simple: no playing with matches, and Are the stove and heater switched off?
An Absence of Saints by Rosanna Licari