Photo by Gill Lambert
Hygge is all about home-made.What could be cosier?
Strands of blue, a coat she made when you
were a grainy photograph, palm-sized and puny.
Rows and rows of rainbow, from the blanket
that your little brother sat on, crawled on,
slept on; the orange matched his hair.
Three hundred stitches wide, a thousand lines,
the leftovers of clothes that fit in other peoples’ lives:
baby socks, football hats, her own soft shawl.
The browns and greys that kept it all together,
the wash-well, hard-wearing functional
she could knit with her eyes shut.
The delicate filigree in white
to wrap a bride, her shoulders sheltered
from the spring wind, there
without an invite. Twists of cable
worked with Aran from the sweaters
made for others. Mohair flitting in and out
of rows of Fair isle. Traditional
and trendy; different generations.
When you and she are of an age
to be at separate ends of life,
when your shadow passes hers
and her hand knots inside the warm ball
of your palm; you will press the edges
round her knees, your fingers finding bumps
where she sewed the ends in,
the tell-tale lumps from mended holes.
And though you’re each as different
as garter stitch or purl,
you’re made of the same ritual;
that sacred act of wrapping yarn.
Grandma tying on a pinny for me.
Rough squeak of cotton strings, the pull
around my middle like a hug.
I’m dressed in 1950s kitsch.
a weird print not unlike a paper bag
to measure out the currants and the flour
the relatives look down benign for once
a lass dressed and employed in fruitful work
in patterns they’d remember
Grandma smooths the weave,
her cold hard fingers skating on the cloth.
Later I get four to take away.
I fetch a paper bag from the soft drawer,
the pattern on the paper
a weird print like a kitchen pinny