At ninety all she can still smell is mint
as if, when she was very young
in the garden of her girlhood home,
she wished for a long life in exchange
for loyalty to the spry herb at her feet.
Grandad's nickname for her: Mint,
her handbag armed always with imperials.
On her supermarket dinner she douses
home-made mint sauce like holy water.
Richie McCaffery lives in Alnwick, Northumberland. He's the author of a number of poetry pamphlets, the most recent being First Hare from Mariscat Press (2020). He has also published two book-length collections from Nine Arches Press, Cairn and Passport. A new pamphlet collection titled Coping Stones is due out this year from Fras Publications.