Six Months in Aarhus

This time last year, you wore thin blades
screwed to the sole of white leather boots
and wobbled close to snow-clad skirts
of a frozen lake.

Your tongue still spilled English words

skates
ice
cold

The lake remained solid for weeks
long after you coaxed your borrowed skates
into swooping curves and spirals
to explore further from shore

and your tongue learned new shapes

skojte
frossen
koldt

Today I hear you talking on the phone.
Danish flows like summer streams.
Er den vejr godt til skojte?
Is the weather good for skating?

The answer is yes. I can tell, because you say
we don’t get the right sort of cold here.
I hear that whistle in your chest
from the wrong sort of cold.
Last year, it was silent.

I miss that, and the way every day
you tumbled in the door,
tongue tripping out new words:
Mum, I can say ‘Jeg kan skojte’,
and, Mum, I know ‘koldt and sne’.
I miss sleeping with my curtains open,
icicles teething outside my window.

I suggest we drive to the ice rink in the city
though I know it’s not the same.
At the rink, you can’t see marsh-grass
trapped like flies in amber,
can’t gaze through the icewindow
at fish still swimming below.
You can’t roll on your back when you fall
and trace aeroplane journeys
in white stripes across icebergblue skies.
You don’t feel it move beneath your feet,
don’t hear the icesongs chime.

It was hot summer when we left.
Back home, we skated on thin ice,
trying to force our feet into old shoes
too small to fit.

published in a fine line, spring 2020

  24 comments for “Six Months in Aarhus

  1. 24/10/2020 at 6:14 am

    I really enjoyed this – I don’t write poetry myself, but admire anyone who can do it successfully.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Trish
      24/10/2020 at 4:07 pm

      thank you 🙂

      Like

  2. 24/10/2020 at 6:05 am

    Wonderful storytelling and play on words here. Your writing takes on a melancholy tone..I really enjoyed it.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Trish
      24/10/2020 at 4:07 pm

      thank you 🙂

      Like

  3. 24/10/2020 at 4:47 am

    I love this! I grew up learning how to skate outdoors, on an imperfect ‘rink’ kept frozen by the cool temperatures. While we would occasionally go to the rink for different events or reasons, you’re right – it just isn’t the same. Still fun, but there’s something about skating outdoors that is truly special in it’s own way.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Trish
      24/10/2020 at 4:12 pm

      skating outside is such an amazing experience

      Like

  4. The Prepping Wife
    24/10/2020 at 3:50 am

    I am always captivated by how you can draw me in with your words, Trish! You have a talent, that doesn’t require long drawn-out stories. I’ve often admired that trait in writers. This story was certainly no exception for it, it was beautifully written.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Trish
      24/10/2020 at 4:12 pm

      Thank you Erica 🙂

      Like

  5. 24/10/2020 at 12:24 am

    So beautifully expressed. I could picture myself being there and moving with your words. Great choice of words and feelings.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Trish
      24/10/2020 at 12:38 am

      thank you 🙂

      Like

  6. 23/10/2020 at 9:08 pm

    Love, love, love this. I like how you have mixed language by using lovely Danish too x

    Liked by 1 person

    • Trish
      24/10/2020 at 12:38 am

      thank you 🙂

      Like

  7. Lyosha Varezhkina
    23/10/2020 at 7:52 pm

    such a beautiful poem! so many feelings and I could almost see the place

    Liked by 1 person

    • Trish
      24/10/2020 at 12:37 am

      thank you 🙂

      Like

  8. 23/10/2020 at 1:30 pm

    I really enjoyed this! Such a lovely read. Thank you for sharing. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Trish
      23/10/2020 at 2:44 pm

      Thank you – glad you liked it.

      Like

  9. 23/10/2020 at 9:04 am

    Wow! I loved this. What language were the parts that were not English?

    Liked by 1 person

    • Trish
      23/10/2020 at 2:44 pm

      Thank you. The other language is Danish.

      Like

  10. Life With Sonia
    23/10/2020 at 1:17 am

    This was so beautiful. Made my heart warmer.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Trish
      23/10/2020 at 2:43 pm

      Thank you 🙂

      Like

  11. Laura Linklater
    22/10/2020 at 3:27 am

    This is beautiful. I especially love the icesongs chiming. Thank you for sharing your words.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Trish
      22/10/2020 at 3:36 pm

      Thank you – glad you liked it

      Like

  12. Gill
    20/10/2020 at 8:38 pm

    Beautifully captured. Those six months were the turning point to adventure and life. My heart sings for you.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Trish
      20/10/2020 at 10:53 pm

      An amazing time, led on to more amazing times. 🙂

      Like

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