The Three Gifts
It was geranium red, perfect
for her black hair – she danced
around the room, coat held out
as though she might curtsey.
Instead, her young hands fingered
the lining near the buttons;
there, in sing-song stitch, words
embroidered in two shades of silk
on the lining’s shadow-grey,
a sprinkle of turquoise stars
and her name in gold,
the other words in brilliant turquoise:
For Asha because you are beautiful.
Shirley Nicholson lives in Manchester and Edinburgh and has work published in Beautiful Dragons anthologies, Best of Manchester Poets series, and work published by Blue House Journal, Wet Grain and InkyLab. She served on the advisory team for Poets and Players and participated in two London garden residencies with the Poetry School.