Randell Cottage Writers Trust online poetry festival — Maggie Rainey-Smith

poetry day logo 2014 webThe Randell Cottage Writers Trust is marking National Poetry Day (22 August 2014) with our own online poetry festival, a series of poems by Randell Cottage poets (a term encompassing our residents, trustees and committee members).


Maggie Rainey SmithThe first comes from novelist, poet, essayist and Friends committee member Maggie Rainey-Smith.


Love in the Fifties

She wore a second-hand,

button-through frock

covered in rosebuds


a belt at her waist

of the same fabric

and black patent shoes


he wore corduroy trousers

a silver cigarette tin in his

back pocket and carpet slippers


they paid half a crown at the

turnstile and Tex Morton sang

‘Old Shep’ on the slow ride


she loved candyfloss and

he lost his front tooth

to a toffee apple


they marvelled together at

the half-man half-woman,

the one white thigh


he proposed on the ghost

train and she screamed

as the skeletons rattled


she wore a hat with

matching gloves and

carried a small bump


they stoked the fire together

and the hot water rumbled

over the red roof tiles


when the ditch was filled

with rainwater and he

was so full that he fell


she dried his clothes on

the rack above the stove

where the roast rested


And there’s more; more

than the rain and the

lost footbridges; barbiturates


This is only the start

but who

has the time nowadays?


Maggie Rainey-Smith
First published in 4th Floor Literary Journal 2010, Whitireia New Zealand Creative Writing Programme