Tombs of an unknown soldier

In the unmarked grave in her head
the foetus of a formal education
aborted by back room absolutists.

Lying in repose in the tips
of her fingers, the budding writer
Gunned down by guardians
of scholars and saints.
Below knuckles needed more
to knead, to Knock, to knit.

Beneath fancy notions, her ambitions
of professional progression.
Disappeared by the Marriage Bar
before being discovered by a passerby
Along the shoreline of her hopes years later
and given the dignity of burial.

Encased in her top drawer
behind discontinued perfumes
and lilac scarves no longer worn,
the slim body of a thermometer.
Useful as iodine tablets
in the event of a nuclear attack
against the prospect of another mouth to feed.

Resting at the bottom of a brandy urn,
the ashes of financial autonomy.
Stirred occasionally with a swirl
before she washes it down
The bittersweet pill of freedom
And toasts our himdependence.

Ireland, 2016