Charlie Jones: two poems

Big Issue Woman

This brown woman
In a shawl sky-blue
Shouts, ‘big issue, please,
Big issue.’
Though she tries her best,
The people walk on past.
‘Thank you, thank you,’
She cries, ‘God bless.’

 

An Immigrant’s Daughter

The daughter of an immigrant has hair as dark as desert
nights
And skin like sand beneath the soles of those who chased
the rising sun.
The daughter of an immigrant explains to children wrong
and right
And once the school bell tolls she knows her work has only
just begun.

With wrinkled hands she hangs wet bedsheets on a
ragged washing line
And feeds two mouths enough to fill the bellies of two
hundred more,
For she recalls mamoosa shared between a family of nine
And closing weary eyes upon a naked mattress on the
floor.

I’ve watched her for a generation, as a crowd beholds a
queen,
And wonder how much work of hers has surely passed me
by unseen.
The daughter of an immigrant, generous beyond compare.

And when she, like her mother, makes for soils of a more
peaceful place,
I pray she leaves for me her spirit so that I might also chase
The rising sun her father yearned and one day, smiling,
meet her there.

Charlie Jones is an aspiring poet and writer from Merseyside, currently undertaking an MA in Race and Resistance at the University of Leeds. His poetry has featured in the University of Leeds creative- arts magazine The Scribe and Liverpool-based magazine IsWrite. He has also contributed to Literature Wales’s ‘Dylan’s Great Poem 2016’ and was shortlisted for the Leeds Peace Poetry Prize in 2012. He hopes to continue publishing his work, which includes short stories, novellas, and film screenplays, in addition to poetry.

Charlie Jones is an aspiring poet and writer from Merseyside, currently undertaking an MA in Race
and Resistance at the University of Leeds. His poetry has featured in the University of Leeds creative-
arts magazine The Scribe and Liverpool-based magazine IsWrite. He was shortlisted for the Leeds Peace Poetry Prize in 2012. He hopes to continue publishing his work, which includes short stories, novellas, and film screenplays, in addition to poetry.